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Angina is chest pain or discomfort that occurs when the heart isn’t receiving enough blood. It is a symptom of an underlying heart problem, usually coronary artery disease.

There are three types of angina:

  • Stable angina, the most common form, may occur when the heart is working harder than usual. It is usually helped by rest and medication.
  • Unstable angina, which can occur without physical activity and could be a sign of a potential heart attack.
  • Variant angina is rare, occurring at rest, and is often helped by medication.

Angina: what you should know

  • Along with pressure or squeezing in the chest, signs of angina may include indigestion or pain in the shoulders, arms, neck, jaw or back.
  • Though angina is a sign of coronary artery disease, not all chest pain or discomfort is an indication of coronary artery disease. Other conditions that can cause chest pain include a lung infection or a panic attack.