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British Heart Foundation
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I'm new here ~ GTN SPRAY

Hi Folks ~ heart attack beginning of Oct and 1 stent so week 5 now. Have been told have heart failure. I know to ring rehab or GP or out of hours if I need help.

But ~

What feeling am I supposed to take GTN spray for? Does it feel the same and same place as the heart attack? I have a 'heavy heart' feeling but no actual pain.

Can't seem to find a simple answer that I can refer back to.

When do you guys take it?

4 Replies

Hi jicci, when I had one I was advised to take it as I needed it, at the onset of chest pain or discomfort around the heart. Now I know from here and talking to others no two people have the same symptoms for angina but I would advise better safe than sorry and you'll learn, if you use it and it eases the problem wonderful, just keep to the recommended dose and be seated or lying down

More about gtn can be found here bhf.org.uk/heart-matters-ma...

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GTN spray is usually taken when you have pain that is exercise induced and by exercise it can be something as simple as getting out of a chair. Unfortunately cardiac pain does not play to a set of rules, Classically its pain in left side up to jaw and down arm. I never had any of those symptoms, all of mine were on my right hand side and stayed in the chest. My advise is if in doubt, have a squirt of the GTN - the worst that is likely to happen is some light headedness and potentially a headache, but its a small price to pay for a little bit of caution. If you think you are using your GTN too much (and I confess I don't know what too much is - the Patient Information Leaflet should tell you), talk to your GP asap.

Hope this helps




Hi... similar story here and I wondered the same thing. I used mine a couple of times when my chest felt tight. I wasn’t in any particular pain but thought I’d try it to see if it helped -which it did. I’m pretty sure my chest tightness was down to having a cold at the time rather than anything else like angina. It won’t do you any harm so long as you stick to the recommended dose. Take it if you have any pain obviously but also when you’re just experiencing a bit of discomfort. It will give you a headache though!


wow i an a bit shocked as i thought i should only use my sprat in the most serious situations, i am glad to see that 'the worst that is likely to happen is some light headedness and potentially a headache' i have not had an episode yet but its good to know

thank you

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