Heart disease is a term used for a variety of conditions that impact the heart. These include conditions of the blood vessels, arrhythmias, and even congenital defects. Whatever the kind of heart disease an older adult has, it’s important that it be taken seriously. Understanding the symptoms caused by the kind of heart disease they have can help you to know when they need medical attention. Below are some of the kinds of heart disease and the symptoms they cause. 

Atherosclerotic Disease

Home Care Hopewell Junction, NY: Recognizing Heart Disease in Seniors

Atherosclerotic disease is heart disease that affects the blood vessels. The symptoms your older family member has can depend on whether they are male or female. For example, a man will typically have chest pain while a woman might have other symptoms, like feeling short of breath or nausea. Symptoms of atherosclerotic disease may include: 

  • A feeling of discomfort or pain in the chest, including tightness and pressure. 
  • Feeling short of breath. 
  • Depending on which blood vessels are affected, there may be pain, numbness, weakness, or coldness in the arms or legs. 
  • Pain in the jaw, neck, throat, back, or upper part of the abdomen. 


An arrhythmia is an abnormal heartbeat. It can cause the heart to beat too quickly, too slowly, or in an uneven manner. Symptoms of arrhythmias include: 

  • A fluttering feeling in the chest. 
  • Fast heartbeat. 
  • Slow heartbeat. 
  • Pain or discomfort in the chest. 
  • Feeling short of breath. 
  • Dizziness. 
  • Lightheadedness. 
  • Fainting or feeling faint. 


Endocarditis is an infection that happens in the membrane inside the heart that separates the chambers and valves. Symptoms of an infection in the heart are: 

  • Fever. 
  • Weakness. 
  • Fatigue. 
  • Swelling that occurs in the abdomen or legs. 
  • Coughing that is dry and persistent. 
  • Skin rashes. 
  • Heart rhythm changes. 

Heart Valve Problems 

There are four valves in the heart. Sometimes they become damaged and can become narrow, leak, or fail to close correctly. The symptoms an older adult has will depend on which valve is affected. However, some general symptoms of heart valve problems include: 

  • Shortness of breath. 
  • Fainting. 
  • An irregular heartbeat. 
  • Pain in the chest. 
  • Swelling in the ankles and feet. 
  • Fatigue. 

Regardless of the kind of heart disease your older family member has, home care can help. A home care provider can drive your aging relative to doctor appointments. A home care provider can also remind the older adult when they need to take medications, so they don’t forget. Home care providers can also cook heart healthy meals that improve overall health. 


If you or an aging loved-one is considering Home Care in Hopewell Junction, NY please contact the caring staff at JANCARE Private Health Services, Inc. today at (845) 896-5300.