Risks & signs

Christina Stuwe, living with heart disease

Half of women who have a heart attack have their symptoms go unrecognized.

Knowing the signs will save lives.


Heart disease and stroke are the #1 cause of premature death in women. But nearly 40% of Canadians don’t know that. We need to increase awareness of the risks and symptoms specific to women. Educating healthcare professionals is just as crucial. 


Learn your risks

Life stages play a key role in women’s unique risk factors for heart disease and stroke.  Know what to watch for.

Learn the signs of heart attack and stroke.

You could save a woman’s life.

Signs of heart attack in women

Women don’t always have the “Hollywood heart attack”, with its characteristic chest-clutching pain. If you experience any of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately.

  • Chest discomfort 

    Chest discomfort 

    Pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain, burning or heaviness

  • Nausea


  • Shortness of breath

    Shortness of breath

  • Sweating


  • Upper body discomfort

    Upper body discomfort

    Neck, jaw, shoulder, arms, back

  • Light-headedness


Signs of stroke

Stroke is a medical emergency. If you experience any of these signs, call 9-1-1. Do not drive to the hospital. An ambulance will get you to the best hospital for stroke care.

FAST signs of stroke

Help raise awareness to beat health inequity.