Mercy Cardiologist Dr. Mark Goldstein Discusses Symptoms of Heart Attack

February 6, 2017
The Heart Center at Mercy - Baltimore, MD

The risk of a heart problem increases significantly with age. By age 65, one in three women will have heart-related symptoms. But do you know what they are?

“I started not feeling good and getting very weak, like I could barely make it up the steps,” patient Elizabeth Miller said.

That was 25 years ago, but Miller remembers it well. She saw a doctor immediately, a decision that turned out to be a very smart move. It turned out she had a blockage in her heart and ended up having double bypass surgery. 

According to Mercy cardiologist Dr. Mark Goldstein, Her cardiologist, Mercy Medical Center’s Dr. Mark Goldstein, women's heart attack symptoms differ from men's.

“More commonly (they) may present without chest pain,” Dr. Goldstein said. “And that can delay their presentation to the hospital and delay diagnosis. Other symptoms of heart attacks in women: shortness of breath, weakness or extreme fatigue.”

Recognizing the signs of a heart attack and getting treatment quickly makes all the difference.

“The longer you wait the more heart muscle damage is done and that can affect your long-term outcome in terms of heart function,” Dr. Goldstein said.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women and men. Risk factors include high blood pressure, diabetes, being overweight and family history. But the greatest risk factor is smoking.

Experts say that half of all women who have a heart attack are smokers.

“Smoking as little as one or two cigarettes a day can increase our risk,” Dr. Goldstein said. “The good news is, if we stop our risk can decline and improve rapidly.”

Miller, who explains she has never smoked, pays close attention to her diet and takes time for exercise. 

View Mercy cardiologist Dr. Mark Goldstein’s interview regarding heart attack symptoms in women.

Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874 in downtown Baltimore by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Medical Center is a 183-licensed bed acute care university-affiliated teaching hospital. Mercy has been recognized as a top Maryland hospital by U.S. News & World Report; a Top 100 hospital for Women’s Health & Orthopedics by Healthgrades; is currently A-rated for Hospital Safety (Leapfrog Group), and is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet Hospital. Mercy Medical Center is part of Mercy Health Services (MHS), the parent of Mercy’s primary care and specialty care physician enterprise, known as Mercy Personal Physicians, which employs more than 200 providers with locations in Baltimore, Lutherville, Overlea, Glen Burnie, Columbia and Reisterstown. For more information about Mercy, visit, MDMercyMedia on FacebookTwitter, or call 1-800-MD-Mercy.

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