How can I tell if I am having a heart burn or heart attack? It seems that symptoms of heart burn and heart attack are very similar, how can I tell the differences and the warning signs before it's too late

Treat heartburn. It can be hard to tell the difference even for your doctor without testing. I find it very useful to treat the heartburn proactively by avoiding foods that cause it and maybe using medication to suppress it if needed. That way you are less likely to get any chest pain. You should also talk to your doctor about modifying your risk factors for heart disease.
There . There is no single test that distinguished one from the other. A heart attack is more likely if you are a man older than age 55, or a woman older than age 65, if you smoke, have diabetes, high blood pressure or have high levels of total cholesterol. It is more likely to be a heart attack if you have relatives who had a heart attack at an early age (men before age 55 or women before age 65) or you have had a heart attack previously. A heart attack is usually a feeling of pressure behind your breast bone which may radiate to the arms, associated with exertion (activity) and relieved with rest or nitroglycerin. It may be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, sweating or feeling faint. It is less likely to be a heart attack if the pain is sharp or stabbing, occurs due to a change in your position or with taking a deep breath. Heartburn is a burning sensation in the chest that may radiate into the back, jaw, neck or arms, and can be accompanied by a cough, hoarseness, difficulty or pain with swallowing, vomiting and lung problems including asthma and pneumonia. It may resolve on its own or with the use of antacids. It occurs after you eat, especially if you lie down soon after, if you eat a lot of chocolate, or peppermints, if you smoke or drink coffee. Because these types of chest pain are difficult to separate, if you think you might be having a heart attack, call 911, use Nitroglycerin if you have it, and chew on an Aspirin while you await 911.

Related Questions

Is there a relationship between heart burn and heart attack?

Sometimes. Heart burn is a description of pain, a burning sensation in the chest. If it is related to exertion, it would be more likely to be a heart problem. If it is related to eating it is more likely to be gastrointestinal. Either way, it is sometimes hard to be sure without testing to exclude the heart so the symptom should be taken seriously and investigated. Read more...
No. There's no known association between acid-reflux, the condition that causes "heartburn", and heart attack. However, the chest discomfort in these two conditions can mimic each other. For instance, people with heartburn frequently feel more of a chest pressure, tightness, or pain than an actual "burning", and those with a heart attack may have classical reflux symptoms. Read more...
No. Although the symptoms of one could be mistaken for the other, heartburn and heart attack are unrelated. A heart attack occurs when heart muscle is damaged from sudden lack of blood flow. Heartburn refers to he discomfort caused by acid refluxing from the stomach up into the esophagus. Read more...
No. But they both cause chest pain that may feel the same and be in the same location. Err on the side of caution. Assume it's heart attack until proven otherwise. Read more...

How to determine if chest pain is a heart attack or just heart burn?

Chest pain. There are a lot of causes for chest pain, but the most serious causes should be ruled out by your dr. Especially at your age. A few simple test maybe able to put your mind at ease. Read more...
Classically. Angina pectoris =substernal pressure, pain with radiation to the neck or left or right arm and shoulder. Some will have abdominal pain-and be confused with gallbladder or stomach symptoms. Ladies seem to have less classic// or tolerate pain better than men. Relief with Nitroglycerin is very suggestive. A feeling of impending doom, pallor, sweating suggest a bad day! Read more...

How can I differntiate betwen heart attack and heart burn?

Can be difficult. Heart attack typically presents as chest pressure, tightness or heaviness as if someone is sitting on your chest, triggered by physical or emotional exertion, possibly spreading to your jaw, neck, shoulder or arm, associated with shortness of breath, pounding heart beat, sweating, dizziness or nausea. It may not present in this typical way. Can be confused with heart burn. If suspected, go to er. Read more...
No self diagnosis. One can be easily confused with the other and it is important to see a doctor to find out. Generally speaking angina pain tends to last 2 to 5 minutes, comes on with exercise and resolves with rest. Heart burn pain tends to be related to certain types of oily, acidic or spicy food, can lasts or hours and some relief noted with antacids. Warning. Do not try to self diagnose! Read more...

How does heart burn feel differently from heart attack pain?

Hard to tell. It is at times difficult to differentiate between pain due to heart diease and that caused by problems of the upper GI tract.Specific symptoms, age, personal and family medical history may all help in making a determination. However, it is never a good idea to assume that indigestion is the cause. Better to go to the er and get an evaluation than to take an antacid and find out you were wrong. Read more...
Sometimes can't tell. Heart burn usually occurs after eating, and heart attack pain (angina) usually occurs after strenuous activity ... But either can occur in either scenario ... Read more...

What's the differencce between heart burn or a heart attack?

Can overlap. Heartburn is esophagitis, gastritis, reflux and related to diet, timing, bending over, regurgitation, better with antacids, GI meds Prilosec etc. Sometimes belching. Tends to be front and neck and " burning" ! angina and heart attack tend to be pressure, squeeze, and sweaty, clammy, fearful- anxiety provoking fear of death! Read more...
May be same symptoms. But very different problems. Heartburn is a symptom of burning discomfort behind breast bone-causes include reflux of stomach contents, inflammation of esophagus, stomach, ulcers, heart. Heart attack is muscle death in the heart caused by poor blood flow or blockage. May have discomfort, squeezing, burning, heavyness in chest, nausea, vomiting, sweats, shortness of breath, palpitations, faintness. Read more...

Can sudden heartburn be a symptom Of a heart attack?

Heart: MI. yes, heartburn and like symptoms can be due to cardiac causes, all inexplicable instances of chest discomfort mandate investigation as to causal mechanism and appropriate intervention. Detailed history as well as examination and judicious testing are needed especially at your age demographic. Read more...

What does a heart attack feel like and how can you tell that it is not just heartburn?

Chest pain.... Classically it is precordial chest pain, but atypical presentations are common. The only way to tell for sure it is not a heart attack is to be evaluated. Read more...
You can't . Classic symptoms include central chest pressure, left arm or jaw pain, nausea, lightheadedness, shortness of breath, and sweating. Any or all symptoms could represent a heart attack. If you are worried you should see a doctor. Read more...