Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection (SCAD)

Spontaneous coronary artery dissection — sometimes referred to as SCAD — is a heart condition that occurs when there is a tear in one of the blood vessels in the heart. The tear blocks the blood flow to the heart, leading to a heart attack.

90% of SCAD cases are women, mostly between the ages of 30-50 years old. Women with SCAD are generally healthy and will have no prior risk factors for heart disease.

SCAD develops without warning and symptoms vary with some reporting mild discomfort to others experiencing symptoms similar to a heart attack. SCAD is not widely understood and is often misdiagnosed.


Signs and symptoms of spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) are the same as symptoms of other types of heart attacks and may include:

  • Chest pain
  • A rapid heartbeat or fluttery feeling in your chest
  • Pain in your arms, shoulders or jaw
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Unusual, extreme tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness

If you have been diagnosed with SCAD and are interested in joining a Facebook group or learning more about a research group then follow the links below:

Facebook groups:

United States

SCAD Survivors

SCAD Survivors is a closed Facebook support group for survivors of Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection (SCAD).


Australian SCAD Survivors

This is a closed Facebook support group for Australian survivors of SCAD.

New Zealand

SCAD Survivors New Zealand

This is a closed group for Survivors of Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection (SCAD) living in New Zealand.

United Kingdom & Ireland

SCAD – UK & Ireland Survivors

This is a Facebook group for UK- and Ireland-based survivors of SCAD.

Research groups and NFPs:

United States

SCAD Research

SCAD Research is dedicated to raising funds to support the most promising Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection (SCAD) research and to ultimately bring awareness, dissemination of knowledge and research findings to the bedside of patients with SCAD.

SCAD Alliance

SCAD Alliance is a non-profit charity that aims to be the leader in advancing the science of Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection (SCAD) through improved knowledge and cooperation among health care professionals, patients, and their families. 


SCAD Research Australia

SCAD Research Inc. is an Australian not-for-profit health promotion charity which raises awareness & research funds for Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection.

United Kingdom


Beat SCAD is a patient-led charity that aims to support SCAD patients and their families, raise awareness of SCAD and raise funds for research into the condition.

SCAD Research Portal – University of Leicester

The SCAD Research Portal is a page of the Leicester Cardiovascular Biomedical Research Unit (LCBRU) at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester. Their research aims to achieve a better understanding of SCAD.