Angina is a common heart attack symptom - know what to ask your doctor about treating your chest pain
By Katherine Solem
Angina is a type of chest pain or pressure that occurs when your heart is not getting enough blood and oxygen. If you have angina, you should be seeking treatment for angina from a doctor. Angina is a key symptom of coronary artery disease, the most common form of heart disease. Unstable angina is a serious condition and can signal that a heart attack may happen soon.
If you have angina, it's important that you know what type of angina you have, how to treat it and when to seek help. Here are 10 questions you should ask your doctor about angina.
- Do I have stable angina or unstable angina? What's the difference?
- What are signs that my stable angina has become unstable angina? What should I do when I start to notice this?
- What should I do when I am having an angina attack?
- When should I call 911? When should I call the doctor's office?
- How can I change my lifestyle to relieve angina symptoms and protect against a heart attack?
- Are there changes I should make to my diet?
- What can trigger an angina attack?
- How are my blood pressure and cholesterol levels? What should I do to keep them healthy?
- What kinds of activities are safe for me to do? What kind of exercise routine do you recommend for me?
- What medicines should I take? For how long will I need to take them? Is it safe to stop taking the medicines if I feel better?
- Is it safe for me to take angina medication with the other meds I'm taking?
- How should I expect my condition to progress within the next few weeks, months and years? How should I be monitoring my condition?
Katherine Solem is a health writer and editor living in San Francisco.