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Chest pain has long been regarded by doctors and laypeople alike as a telltale sign of a heart attack. However, according to a study published recently in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), many patients who are taken to the hospital for heart attacks never experience chest pain. The study raises the possibility that heart attack misdiagnosis is more common than once believed.

The study, authored by Dr. John G. Canto at the Lakeland Regional Medical Center in Florida, found that women were less likely to experience chest pain during a heart attack than men. Out of 1.1 million people surveyed, 42 percent of women admitted to hospitals for heart attacks never experienced chest pain. Just over 30 percent of men surveyed did not experience chest pain. Women were also more likely to die from a heart attack: the mortality rate for women surveyed was 15 percent, compared to only 10 percent for men.

According to Dr. Canto, one of the reasons that women suffer a higher mortality rate than men is because they present more often with less classic symptoms of heart attack than men. Unfortunately, doctors may not realize what the problem is until it is too late.

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If you or someone you love has suffered injury because of the negligence of a physician, contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney. A knowledgeable medical malpractice lawyer can assess your case and help you get the compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering you deserve. For more information, contact an attorney today.