Recognising your Heart Attack
Do heart attacks only happen to men?
NO. Heart attacks don’t only happen to men. In fact, of all the deaths from heart attacks in 2007, almost half were women. All men and women need to learn the different warning signs of a heart attack and why it is important to act quickly and call Triple Zero (000)*.
I’ll know when I am having a heart attack – it’s like on TV
NO. The symptoms of a heart attack, and their severity, vary from person to person. They’re not always sudden or severe. Some people don’t get any chest pain at all – only pain or discomfort in other areas of their upper body.
Over half of all people who have a heart attack die before reaching hospital. So learn all the warning signs, because the sooner you recognise your heart attack and get treatment the better. Don’t hesitate to call Triple Zero (000)*, if it turns out to be a false alarm, that’s the best thing that can happen.
Do all heart attacks start with chest pain?
NO. Many people who have a heart attack don’t experience chest pain at all. Rather they feel discomfort in other areas of their upper body. Other symptoms such as nausea, shortness of breath, a cold sweat or dizziness may also be experienced.
So learn the different heart attack warning signs, and understand that they can present themselves in isolation or in various combinations. If you experience the warning signs of a heart attack, act quickly and call Triple Zero (000)*.
Is calling Triple Zero (000) the fastest way to treat a heart attack?
YES. The fastest way to get treatment for a heart attack is to call Triple Zero (000)*. Treatment starts the minute you call, as the operator will provide life saving advice about what to do before the ambulance arrives.
The safest and fastest way to get to hospital is in an ambulance. Paramedics are trained to use life saving equipment, and can start treatment for a heart attack inside the ambulance.
*If calling Triple Zero doesn’t work on your phone, try 112.