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heart attack symptoms unique to women

What are the Heart Attack Symptoms Unique to Women?

Eye popping, chest clutching, forward slouching exasperation… that’s what a heart attack might look like on TV. But it’s not how heart attack symptoms actually play out in many real life cases. And it’s especially not an accurate representation of how women experience heart attacks.

In fact, men and women can experience heart attack symptoms quite differently. And, by the way, heart disease isn’t just a man’s problem. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States.”

Heart disease is responsible for one in four female deaths, and approximately the same number of men and women die from heart disease each year. Nearly two-thirds of women who die from heart disease have no previous symptoms.

Heart Attack Symptoms in Women

In women, heart attack symptoms may include:

  • Angina (chest pain/discomfort that may range from dull to sharp)
  • Pain in the neck, jaw, throat, upper abdomen or back. (These areas can be more common among women than men.
  • Additionally, this pain is more likely to be characterized by women as “sharp” or “burning.”)
  • Indigestion, heartburn, nausea or vomiting
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Note: some women may experience no symptoms at all.

If you experience any of the above symptoms, call 911 immediately.

While chest pain is the #1 symptom for both men and women, women are more likely to experience the other pains described above, as well as shortness of breath and nausea/vomiting.

How You Can Reduce Your Risk for Heart Attack

A heart attack occurs every 43 seconds in the United States. However, you don’t have to be a victim. Talk to your internal medicine doctor at St. Thomas Medical Group about how you can manage risk factors such as diabetes, poor diet, being overweight or obese, lack of physical activity, and excessive alcohol use.

Risk reduction techniques may include:

  • Managing high blood pressure through diet, exercise or medication.
  • Getting tested for diabetes (if recommended by your health care provider).
  • Quitting smoking (if currently a smoker).
  • Learning and implementing healthy dietary habits.
  • Lowering stress levels.
  • Limiting alcohol consumption to one drink per day.

See an Internal Medicine Doctor In Nashville

Do you need a physician who will partner with you in your heart health? Meet the internal medicine providers at St. Thomas Medical Group. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call +1 (615) 297-2700. You can also request an appointment online.

11 Questions to Ask In Choosing Your Child’s Pediatrician

Whether you’re new to Nashville or new to being a parent, finding the right pediatrician for your child can feel like a daunting task. In this post, our team at St. Thomas Medical Group hopes to make the process easier for you! Browse through some of the suggested questions below to jumpstart some thoughts about what you prioritize in your child’s healthcare.

Selecting a Pediatrician in Nashville

Do any of these questions spark some thoughts?

1. Do you have any specialized training?
2. How long have you practiced medicine?
3. What hospital(s) do you work with?
4. Do you offer same-day visits? At St. Thomas Medical Group, we do our best to provide same-day acute care visits Monday through Saturday with extended weekend hours.
5. What tests are done in-office? Will I have to take my child to a separate facility for certain tests?
6. What are your views on sleep training or circumcision? If you have questions about specific, sometimes controversial, health-related issues, it’s okay to ask the pediatrician directly for his or her opinion. Your child’s pediatrician is a partner in health, after all!
7. Can we contact you if we have an urgent need or a routine question?
8. Do you provide input on issues outside of my child’s physical health, such as social behavior and psychological development?
9. How long will we have to wait to get an appointment?
10. How long does a typical wellness exam take?
11. What is your opinion on prescribing antibiotics?

These are just a few questions to help you start thinking about what’s important to you as a new parent. In meeting with a pediatrician, nothing is off the table. After all, this is your child’s health we’re talking about!

If you already have children, feel free to bring them with you to the interview. Also, make sure to bring pen and paper so you can take notes on the answers!

Are you a new parent? If so, read our brief New Parent guide.

Find a Pediatrician in Nashville Today

Find a pediatrician near you at St. Thomas Medical Group Department of Children and Adults. Walk-ins are available on Saturday for established patients with acute medical concerns. (Learn more.) To schedule an appointment, call +1 (615) 301-7040 or schedule online.

Where to Get an Aviation Medical Exam in Nashville (FAA Approved)

Obtaining an aviation medical certificate is an essential step for an aspiring commercial pilot. While passing this exam is easy and painless for those of relatively good health, pilots with some health concerns may feel a little anxious about getting their aviation medical certificate.

Fortunately, there is some room for grace in this exam. If you’re not in perfect health, you still have a chance of receiving FAA approval.

Scheduling the Aviation Medical Exam

In order to obtain a certificate, you must schedule an appointment with an FAA-designated Aviation Medical Examiner. Dr. John M. Guenst at St. Thomas Medical Group offers this exam. (He’s also a licensed airline transport pilot and certified flight instructor!) Meet Dr. Guenst and schedule here.

Undergoing the Exam

During the medical exam, Dr. Guenst will go over your health history and discuss any issues that may delay a certificate. Even though some medical conditions are considered disqualifying, they can sometimes be waived if they are considered to be adequately controlled. (Examples may include: heart disease, diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, and others. Learn more.)

Eyesight (including color vision, near- and farsightedness, and peripheral vision) is checked, as well as your hearing. Urinalysis, a blood pressure exam, and questions about your mental health may also be included. If over the age of 40, an annual ECG may be part of the health requirements for flying.

After the Exam

An aviation medical exam can have one of three outcomes: approval, denial, or deferment to the FAA. An outright denial is uncommon. If your exam does not result in an approval, it’s common for the examiner to send the application on to the FAA for further approval.

For more information, you can view the latest guide for Aviation Medical Examiners here. This guide contains all the information you may want to know about the exam and regulations surrounding the process.

Schedule an Aviation Medical Exam in Nashville

Schedule your appointment with Dr. Guenst online using the following link. If you need to be seen sooner than the listed available appointments, please call the office, and we will do our best to accommodate you.

For more information on scheduling an aviation medical exam, call +1 (615) 964-5821.