The cause of arm pain during a heart attack is pain traveling from the heart and chest, which spreads to the arms and other parts of the body, explains WebMD. Pain in the arms and other areas does not always occur when a person has a heart attack.
In some cases, patients experiencing a heart attack feel pain in arms and other areas without experiencing pain in the chest, according to WebMD. Other areas of the upper body that might experience pain include the shoulders, jaw, neck, elbows and abdomen area. The pain does not have to remain constant to be a symptom of a heart attack.