Research suggests 45% of heart attacks have no noticeable symptoms

New Delhi: As per studies, a silent heart attack is often symptomless but the risk of a person dying is the same as that during a symptomatic heart attack. Though silent heart attacks strike men more often than women, the latter are equally at risk.

About 45 percent of all heart attacks are silent, according to a research. On World Heart Day, awareness needs to be raised on this condition and that it becomes apparent only during a chance electrogram indicating damage to heart muscles.

Silent heart attacks occur when blood flow to the heart muscle is severely reduced or cut off completely. Statistics indicate that about 25 percent of all heart attacks occur in people below the age of 40 years. The classic symptoms of a silent heart attack such as fatigue or physical discomfort, poor sleep, and age-related ache or pain are often confused as gastric reflux, indigestion, and heartburn.

Speaking about this, Dr Suman Bhandari of Fortis Hospital, Noida, said, "The outcome of a silent heart attack is as bad as one whose symptoms are detected. However, there is a lack of knowledge about these signs, which can delay timely diagnosis and treatment."

"At times, the location of pain can be misdiagnosed. For instance, some people feel a discomfort in the center of the chest as opposed to a sharp pain on the left side, a symptom often associated with heart attack. Many people also feel completely normal during and after a silent heart attack which further increases the probability of missing the warning signs. Recurring silent heart attacks can cause scarring and damage to the heart. In the absence of treatment, this condition multiplies the risk of a second and potentially more harmful heart attack."

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