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HealthInfo Canterbury

Overview of angina (chest pain)

Angina is chest pain caused by a lack of blood supply to an area of the heart. This is usually caused by a narrowing of arteries in the heart. While angina is not a heart attack, people with angina have a higher risk of having a heart attack.


If you have chest pain that is more prolonged and severe than your normal angina, you feel faint, sweaty and sick, you are finding it hard to breath, or you have a rapid heart rate, treat it as a heart attack and phone 111 for an ambulance.

Do I have angina?

As well as angina, many other things can cause chest pain. These include anxiety, a collapsed lung, costochondritis, indigestion, and a pulmonary embolism. See your GP to find out what is causing your pain.

On the next page: Angina tests and diagnosis

Written by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed May 2018.

Page reference: 920780

Review key: HIANG-25275