Unrecognized Heart Attacks
Patients with prediabetes are at an increased risk of cardiovascular complications, including unrecognized heart attacks. These types of heart attacks may not be detected until patients receive cardiovascular screening tests at routine physical exams. Generally, these attacks produce vague, subtle symptoms patients may dismiss as indigestion or another minor ailment.
For example, unrecognized ('silent') heart attacks can cause patients to have shortness of breath, and this may be accompanied by discomfort in an arm or leg or in the throat, neck, or jaw. Patients may feel unusually fatigued for no known reason. Electrocardiograms and echocardiograms can detect silent heart attacks; electrocardiograms are sometimes performed on patients who are fifty years old or older during annual physicals. Damage caused by an unrecognized heart attack may lead to serious arrhythmias and heart valve issues.