Understand Symptoms of Heart Attack and Stroke
If you don’t know you have AFib, you can easily confuse early symptoms with having a heart attack. Once you have determined that you suffer from atrial fibrillation, however, you’re not out of the woods.
With treatment and lifestyle changes you can greatly reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke related to AFib, but you’re still at greater risk than the average person, so it behooves you to know the warning signs of these life-threatening conditions so that you can seek immediate care.
Warning signs of a heart attack include chest pressure or pain lasting more than a few minutes, shortness of breath, upper body discomfort (neck, back, jaw, stomach, or arms), and nausea, lightheadedness, or a cold sweat. Some of these symptoms are also common when you have heart palpitations, but you should always err on the side of caution if you think you’re having a heart attack.
Signs of stroke include difficulty speaking, arm pain, numbness, or weakness, and numbness or drooping on one side of the face. If you have AFib and experience any of these conditions, call 911 immediately.