What should I do if I have angina?

If you have any chest pain, see your doctor. Angina is not normal and should not be ignored. Take your angina seriously.

You need to pay attention to certain warning signs. Even if you are being treated for angina, there are some warning signs that you must act on immediately. Get emergency medical care immediately if any of these statements is true about your chest pain.


  • It's new.
  • It's severe.
  • It's accompanied by weakness, nausea, lightheadedness, or fainting.
  • It's worse than any previous chest pain.

Learn the pattern your angina follows, and watch for changes. Pay attention to what triggers your angina, how it feels, how long it lasts, and whether medicine relieves it. Make sure you discuss these things with your doctor. If your angina suddenly changes or gets worse, call for medical help immediately.

Avoid bringing on angina episodes. Once you know what brings on your angina, you can make changes to avoid another attack. For instance, if running brings on chest discomfort, walk instead. If you find that work often brings on angina, try breaking tasks into smaller pieces and taking frequent breaks. If eating large, heavy meals causes angina, try eating smaller amounts several times a day.