Common signs of heart disease include chest pain, jaw pain, nausea and indigestion, snoring, weakness or nausea, and heart palpitations, to name a few. Many people, when asked, will name these signs and symptoms and can recognize the signs of a sick heart because they’re aware of them. But there are some lesser-known sign and symptoms of heart disease that, if overlooked, can put your heart in danger.
Here are six of the more uncommon signs that you’re at risk for heart disease. By spotting these early on, you can begin to get on track to reduce your risk of a cardiovascular-related event from occurring.
Creased earlobes: A physical sign of heart disease is creased earlobes, known as Frank’s sign. Studies have linked that a visible crease in the earlobe is associated with atherosclerosis — hardening of the arteries — which increases the risk of heart disease.
Fatty bumps: Known as xanthomas, these fatty lumps can appear on the elbows, knees, buttock, or eyelids and are commonly seen in individuals with familial hypercholesterolemia. This condition causes individuals to have very high LDL cholesterol — bad cholesterol — and these deposits can reside in the arteries that carry blood from the heart.
Clubbed fingernails: When the fingernails appear clubbed, additional tissue is being produced, causing this appearance. This also reveals changes in the travel of oxygenated blood, specifically that the fingers are not getting an adequate supply of it.
Halo around the iris: When fat deposits in the eyes, it can cause a ring to appear around the iris. Although it doesn’t interfere with vision, it is associated with a higher risk of heart disease.
Poor oral hygiene: Teeth that fall out and rotting gums reveals poor oral hygiene, which has been linked to poor heart health. Bacteria in the mouth can enter the bloodstream, which causes inflammation in the blood vessels, thus contributing to heart disease.
Blue lips: Blue lips (cyanosis) are a sign of a lack of oxygenated blood reaching them. Blue lips can also occur due to cold temperatures, but this condition resolves once you warm up. With cyanosis, the lips remain blue regardless of temperature.
As mentioned, by recognizing these symptoms early on, you can work to reduce your risk fo further heart-related complications.
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