If a patient recovering from COVID develops a new symptom, such as abnormal shortness of breath, along with some strange sensations such as an extremely fast or slow heart rate, unconsciousness, or dizziness, one should always consider the possibility of a heart attack.
Significantly, the patients with underlying diabetes or hypertension are much more vulnerable and must exercise extreme caution.
There are many common symptoms between the virus and a heart attack, and you may want to give a check on them below.
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Symptoms of Heart Attack in COVID cases and recoveries
1. Blood Clots
COVID-19 is an inflammatory disease that primarily affects the body’s blood vessels. Blood becomes thicker, and clots frequently develop in the lungs and coronary arteries.
Experts also claim that the number of clotting incidents associated with COVID has increased, implying that COVID could be just as harmful to the limbic system and blood vessels as it is to the lungs. Doctors also believe that in some cases, the virus may cause blood clots and damage the linings of inner blood vessels, increasing the risk of cardiac arrest and consequences, even in people who have never had a heart attack.
Poor lifestyle choices and poor dietary habits may cause additional issues. COVID-related irrational usage of blood thinners may further contribute to the problem. Anxiety caused by COVID may cause the body to pump more blood and raise heart rate and blood pressure.
However, during and after a COVID infection, patients and caregivers must be watchful for warning signs and symptoms of heart trouble.
Additionally, some patients are on medications that prevent the recurrence of a heart attack but they stop it for some reason. It should not be done for people who previously had a heart attack.
Withdrawing from medications can cause complications, and it is always recommended to continue all your previous medicines for high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes. You should also consider checking with your doctor.
2. Chest Heaviness
Any discomfort, tightness, pressure, pain, or heaviness in or around the chest cavity should be taken seriously.
Numerous individuals describe the discomfort as a squeezing, aching sensation in the chest that frequently spreads to the arms and neck. Abdominal pain and anxiety are also possible. Read more on chest pain and heart attack here.
Sweating heavily could potentially be a symptom of a cardiac arrest. When the body has a lot of clotting, the heart has to work harder to pump blood through the clogged arteries, and sweating helps regulate body temperature due to the increased tiredness. Be cautious and seek medical attention as soon as possible.
4. Shortness of Breath
Any time you’re out of breath or can’t finish a sentence or phrase at a stretch, don’t ignore it. When there isn’t enough oxygenated blood flow to the lungs and vital organs, breathing difficulties, also known as shortness of breath, can occur.
Dizziness is a warning indication that a heart attack is on the way. Exhaustion, which occurs when the heart muscles weaken and render the body weak to operate, can produce fatigue, lightheadedness, or a reduced capacity to sit, stand, or complete a particular activity.
6. Oxygen Levels
Sudden, drastic changes in oxygen levels (the optimal percentage is over 93%) should cause alarm. Coughing that persists, arrhythmias (rapid or irregular heartbeat), and indications of dyspnea should never be overlooked. This is also why post the virus, patients should continue to check their vitals and oxygen levels to maintain proper heart health.
Why are so many younger COVID patients developing heart problems?
As doctors are increasingly noticing, the number of younger, healthy persons suffering from heart disease has increased dramatically, despite having no apparent risk factors.
Shortness of breath, chest pain, weakness, and a fluttering pulse rate can persist in some people for weeks after recovering. According to a JAMA research published last year, nearly 70% of patients experience one or more signs of heart problems after the virus.
There could be more than one viable reason for the same, as evidence reveals.
One of the most prevalent post-COVID complications is myocarditis, or heart inflammation, which can trigger the virus’s infamous cytokine storm. The immune system turns on healthy organs, producing widespread infections.
Oxygen deprivation, a significant risk factor associated with the severity of COVID, could be to blame. Any disruption in the flow of well-oxygenated blood can lead to inflammation, weakening of the heart muscles, and other complications.
Who Is More Likely To Develop Cardiac Issues?
The elderly, as well as those with illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, and lung disease, are more likely to experience problems during COVID infection.
These are the people who are most likely to suffer cardiac problems and have a high death rate. When a person has heart failure and becomes infected with COVID-19, his mortality rate is exceedingly high.
Poor lifestyle choices and poor nutrition can increase difficulties. COVID-related irrational usage of blood thinners may further contribute to the problem, and anxiety caused by COVID may also cause the body to pump more blood and raise heart rate and pressure.
Although not everyone is at risk for a heart attack, it can be triggered by high amounts of stress and dehydration, as well as low blood oxygen levels. Because the consequences of COVID-19 on pre-existing heart disease are unknown, it is recommended that anyone healing from COVID-19 exercise caution rather than panic.
Aged and those with illnesses like diabetes, hypertension, and lung disease are more likely to experience problems during COVID infection.