PSA: Women’s Health

Mom and I had a nice long talk the other day. She owed it to me…as she had just experienced a strange anomaly that had her in the hospital for a few days. It was something to do with her heart.

I hate hearing about this afterward — there’s really no good time to hear something like this. (Thank goodness for Aunt Theda, to whom we tell everything.) I understand why, of course — no one actually knew what was wrong. They still don’t. In fact, the best heart doctor in the city ran every test in the book on Mom and informed her that she was exceptionally healthy and there was nothing wrong with her. They can only assume it was a normal atrial flutter combined with dehydration, not enough food, and dancing for two hours at her dance class. (Does Mom sound like anyone you know? LOL)

She knows I am a glutton for details — especially about things I really don’t want to experience for myself — so she explained everything she felt that day. Especially the jaw pain. I had no idea that jaw pain was one of the major symptoms of a heart attack, especially in women. So  did some research.

We’re all so used to seeing the trademarked left-arm-grab in movies, a lot of folks don’t know about other symptoms of heart attack. Many women who have heart attacks don’t survive BECAUSE they have no idea that what they’re feeling is a heart attack.

Heart Attack Symptoms Other Than the Ones You See in Movies:
1.) Jaw pain (like lock jaw) or back pain
2.) Vomiting
3.) Shortness of breath
4.) Indigestion, or feeling like you’ve swallowed too much food without chewing it well enough

According to, 40% of female heart attack victims feel no chest pain at all. Conversely, men can also exhibit the above symptoms. Listen to your body, people. I care about you — you should care about you too. Go directly to the hospital. Do not pass go.

And for heaven’s sake, don’t make your husband change first because he looks like a slob. Sheesh, Mom! *sigh*