Risk Factors, Warning Signs, and Symptoms of Heart Attack in Men

Many people begin to suffer from more health problems after they reach their 50s. However, the majority of the population, both men and women, are diagnosed with cardiovascular problems as compared to other diseases. Heart disease, especially coronary artery disease, leads to more than 1.2 million heart attacks each year, in which 40% of the patients die before reaching a treatment center. The numbers of incidents of heart attack in men is increasing day by day because of various uncontrollable risk factors.

The risk factors for heart attacks in men

Men over 50 or 60 years of age suffer from heart attacks due to several risk factors, which can be categorized in three subcategories:

  • Major risk factors – These are due to a considerable increase in cardiovascular disease related to the heart and blood vessels.
  • Contributing risk factors – These include factors such as age, sex, family history of heart attack and race (origin and region), which significantly contribute toward the possibility of heart attacks.
  • Controllable risk factors – These mainly depend on human lifestyle (smoking, alcohol consumption, and irregular eating habits), physical inactivity, obesity or overweight, stress, diabetes, bad cholesterol, high blood pressure and anger, and can lead to massive cardiovascular problems.

The basic fact is that, if you indulge in an improper lifestyle and do not go for routine health check-ups, it can advance your heart problems. Heart attacks are basically of two types—controllable and uncontrollable. You will not be able to do much about the uncontrollable risks related to heart attacks. However, for controllable heart problems, you can do several things, such as:

  • Maintaining a routine life and eating properly
  • Giving up smoking and excessive alcohol consumption
  • Engaging in healthy activities like going to the gym, running, swimming, jogging, etc.
  • Getting proper sleep
  • Not taking on unwanted stress
  • Controlling blood pressure
  • Taking medication to control diabetes

Warning signs and symptoms of heart attacks in men
You should try to keep blood pressure under control in order to avoid severe heart attack risks. However, detecting the symptoms in advance or identifying the warning signs can help you a lot when it comes to taking the right steps to lower the risk. Usually, the risk of heart attack starts gradually. Hence, timely treatment can help you stay away from it. Chest pain and pressure on the heart are the most common symptoms, while there are a myriad of other warning signs which you need to know.

  • Squeezing sensation on the left side along with chest discomfort and heartburn.
  • Headache, toothache, or pain in the jaw can also be considered as a warning sign of heart attack.
  • Breathing problems and nausea often indicate cardiovascular disease.
  • Discomfort in the abdomen.
  • Vomiting or uneasiness in the stomach is also an early sign. Indigestion can also be considered as a warning sign.
  • Excessive sweating
  • Pains in the arms or upper back are common symptoms of a heart attack.

Besides the above, there are a few other symptoms that can help you to understand the possibilities of a heart attack. However, even with caution and awareness, one-fourth of heart attacks take place without any prior sign. People suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes should always keep these under control to avoid cardiovascular disease.


Since 2001, Dr. Alexander G. Salerno has led Salerno Medical Associates in East Orange, New Jersey. Dr. Alexander Salerno focuses largely on urban communities and on delivering patient education about both medical and behavioral health issues.