Raising awareness of SCAD (Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection) heart attacks.
A SCAD is an emergency condition that occurs when a tear forms in a blood vessel in the heart. Some symptoms of SCAD include, chest pain, shortness of breath, pain in the arms, back, neck, or jaw, as well as nausea, light-headedness, and sweating.
Although SCAD causes a small percentage of heart attacks overall, it’s responsible for 40% of heart attacks in women under the age of 50 and more than 90% of SCAD patients are female.
SCAD patients are generally healthy and don’t have or do the usual things that can lead to heart attacks, such as smoking, diabetes, or being overweight – so SCAD is often misdiagnosed for anxiety and indigestion, as some of the symptoms are similar.
A member of our Leicestershire team, Catherine Beck survived a SCAD twenty three years ago, when she was just 37 years old.
Catherine had her first baby and a SCAD heart attack on the same day, which was life changing for her. The roller coaster of emotions and the physical challenges were a huge toll on Catherine. At the time, very little was known about SCAD and it took Catherine two years to find out about someone else who had suffered a SCAD heart attack.
So much has changed for the better thanks to SCAD research and the Beat SCAD charity, as well as the wealth of information we now have online and the opportunity to connect with other people with similar experiences on social media.