Angina means chest pain, but specifically cardiac chest pain.
This is caused by a blockage or reduced blood flow to an area of the heart. Less commonly, angina can be caused by inflammation, spasm of the heart arteries or a tear in one of the heart arteries (dissection).
Angina can be a warning sign of a heart attack.
If someone has angina lasting more than 10-15 minutes, and especially if it is associated with shortness of breath, abnormal heart beats, sweating, nausea or dizziness then you should call 911 and seek immediate medical assistance.
Some will describe angina as chest pain, others as pressure or a dull ache.
Some patients will have unusual angina symptoms with no discomfort and just shortness of breath, abnormal heart beats, sweating, nausea or dizziness.
These symptoms are most concerning if they are associated with exertion, especially if the symptoms seem unusually severe for the amount of exertion being performed.
Depends on the cause of the angina.
Nitroglycerin relaxes blood vessels and improves blood flow to the heart.
Beta blockers (metoprolol, atenolol, etc) relax the heart and blood vessels and decreases strain on the heart.
If the angina is due to a blockage in the heart arteries it may require consideration of placing a stent in the heart artery or even bypass surgery in some cases.
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