North London Partners logo

We are a partnership of NHS, councils, and voluntary sector organisations, working together to improve health and care in Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey, and Islington.  

Home E News E World Heart Day – Friday 29 September

World Heart Day – Friday 29 September

Dr Dushyant Maradia, Consultant Cardiologist at North Middlesex University College Hospital with the quote: If you think you or somebody you're with is having a heart attack, don't be tempted to dismiss the signs or wait to see what happens. The faster you act, the better their chances. The text below the quote says: It's never too early to call 999 and check. Visit for more information
World Heart Day falls on Friday 29 September this year, reminding everyone around the world to take care of their hearts. This year focuses on ‘knowing our hearts first’.

This year’s World Heart Day coincides with NHS North London Cardiac Operational Delivery Network’s campaign to raise awareness of heart attack symptoms to help save lives. The campaign will run until 31 October and aims to increase knowledge of heart attack symptoms and address the barriers to acting quickly on signs of a heart attack. It will particularly highlight the varied signs of a heart attack and that symptoms don’t always feel severe, encouraging those experiencing symptoms – or their heart helper – to call 999 and describe symptoms. The attached campaign leaflet explains the early signs of a heart attack and the difference between a heart attack and cardiac arrest. You can view the leaflet by clicking here.

Recognising the possible signs of a heart attack and anything that may be unusual for you, is essential in being able to get help quickly. A recent survey published by NHS England revealed a lack of confidence in recognising the symptoms of a heart attack, with almost half (47%) of people surveyed in London saying they were not confident that they could recognise the signs.

Heart attack symptoms and signs can vary from person to person but can include squeezing across the chest and a feeling of unease. Symptoms don’t always feel severe and some people may have other symptoms such as shortness of breath, feeling or being sick and back or jaw pain without any chest pain. Anyone experiencing heart attack symptoms should call 999.

People’s chances of surviving a heart attack are far higher if they seek care earlier – overall around 7 in 10 people survive a heart attack, which increases to more than 9 in 10 for those who reach hospital early to receive treatment.

Dr Emmanuel Ako is a Consultant Cardiologist at Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals Specialist Care. He urges Londoners to be aware of the signs and to act quickly: “The best advice I can give to anyone who thinks they or someone they’re with might be having a heart attack, is to call 999 immediately. Please don’t risk waiting to see if it gets better. You’re not wasting anyone’s time, and you risk further possible damage to your heart, the longer you leave it. The sooner you get medical help, the better the chances of recovery.”

While the most common symptom is chest pain, symptoms can vary from person to person. Other symptoms of a heart attack can include:

  • a feeling of pain, pressure, heaviness, tightness or squeezing across your chest
  • pain in other parts of the body – it can feel as if the pain is spreading from your chest to your arms (usually the left arm, but it can affect both arms), jaw, neck, back and tummy
  • feeling lightheaded or dizzy
  • sweating
  • shortness of breath
  • feeling sick (nausea) or being sick (vomiting)
  • an overwhelming feeling of anxiety (similar to a panic attack)
  • coughing or wheezing.

Visit for more information.