Unstabel angina: I am a 72-year-old... - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation

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Unstabel angina


I am a 72-year-old male who has suffered from intermittent chest pains for the past 40 years. Some of these have been serial attacks of great severity and, as they used to wake me up only from sleep, I was told that I was suffering from Prinzmetal angina. I was never given any medicines to alleviate the pains. I experienced a huge flare-up of the problem in 1995 and unusually for me from 10 a.m. a week ago last Friday until I rang a local care line a 6.30 p.m. who then sent an ambulance crew to my house so that they could assess the situation. To cut a long story short, I was rushed to a local hospital where, after a considerable number of blood tests as well as frequent ECG test through Friday night until the following Saturday morning, I was eventually told that I was suffering from unstable angina. I had, in effect, suffered an incomplete heart attack the previous day. I was discharged later on that day after having been seen by a cardiologist who has since arranged for me to return to the hospital this month, initially for an echocardiogram and then later on an angiogram. My attack of unstable angina first occurred when I was resting at home. I was not asleep in bed at the time and I was confused because the severe chest pains from which I was suffering were exactly the same chest pains that I had suffered from when I had been woken from my sleep by them. My question is this; What exactly is the difference between Prinzmetal angina and unstable angina in view of what I have said above?

3 Replies

Never heard of it but I will google it. I was told I had unstable angina but because I'm now on meds I was told last week that I no longer have unstable angina. I had a HA in Aug and got a stent then I had an echocardiagram which showed minimalist damage to hear muscle


Hi Crwst - you might find this video from the BHF helpful, it explains all about angina, the differences between types of angina, and the best ways to manage your angina: bhf.org.uk/informationsuppo...

Crwst in reply to Helen_BHF

Many thanks for your valuable response,Helen!

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