What Are The Risk Factors For Atherosclerosis And Heart Attack
Factors that increase the risk of developing atherosclerosis and heart attacks include increased blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, use of tobacco, diabetes mellitus, male gender , and a family history of coronary heart disease. While family history and male gender are genetically determined, the other risk factors can be modified through changes in lifestyle and medications.
- High Blood Cholesterol . A high level of cholesterol in the blood is associated with an increased heart attack risk because cholesterol is the major component of the plaques deposited in arterial walls. Cholesterol, like oil, cannot dissolve in the blood unless it is combined with special proteins called lipoproteins. The cholesterol in blood is either combined with lipoproteins as very low-density lipoproteins , low-density lipoproteins or high-density lipoproteins .
The cholesterol that is combined with low-density lipoproteins is the “bad” cholesterol that deposits cholesterol in arterial plaques. Thus, elevated levels of LDL cholesterol are associated with an increased risk of heart attack.
The cholesterol that is combined with HDL is the “good” cholesterol that removes cholesterol from arterial plaques. Thus, low levels of HDL cholesterol are associated with an increased risk of heart attacks.
How Do I Take Care Of Myself After A Silent Heart Attack
After you go home from the hospital, youll need to keep taking the medicines your provider ordered for you. Its important that you keep taking these medications. Some may be necessary for the rest of your life.
Types of medications may include:
- Beta blockers.
Unfortunately, its possible to have another heart attack once youve already had one. This is why its important to keep taking your medications and follow your providers instructions. Cardiac rehabilitation, which combines education and exercise, can be helpful as well.
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Common Blood Clot Symptoms
Blood clot symptoms vary depending on where the clot is located. According to the American Society of Hematology, you may experience the following symptoms if a blood clot has developed in these specific locations:
Heart; heaviness or pain in the chest, shortness of breath, sweating, nausea, lightheadedness, and discomfort in other areas of the upper body
Brain; weakness of the face, arms or legs, vision problems, difficulty speaking, sudden and severe headache and dizziness
Lung; sharp chest pain, shortness of breath, racing heart, fever, sweating and coughing up blood
Arm or Leg; sudden or gradual pain, swelling, tenderness and warmth
Abdomen; intense abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhea
Who Is At Risk For A Pulmonary Embolism
Risk factors for pulmonary embolism include:
Genetic conditions that increase the risk of blood clot formation
Family history of blood clotting disorders
Surgery or injury or orthopedic surgery
Situations in which mobility is limited, such as extended bed rest, flying or riding long distances, or paralysis
Previous history of clots
You may also have symptoms of deep vein thrombosis , such as:
Pain in the affected leg
Swelling in the leg
Soreness, tenderness, redness, and/or warmth in the leg
Redness and/or discolored skin
If your healthcare provider thinks you have a PE, he or she will check your legs for signs of deep vein thrombosis.
The type and extent of symptoms of a PE will depend on the size of the embolism and whether you have heart and/or lung problems.
The symptoms of a PE may look like other medical conditions or problems. Always talk with a healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
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What Is A Pulmonary Embolism
A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot that develops in a blood vessel in the body . It then travels to a lung artery where it suddenly blocks blood flow.
A blood clot that forms in a blood vessel in one area of the body, breaks off, and travels to another area of the body in the blood is called an embolus. An embolus can lodge itself in a blood vessel. This can block the blood supply to a particular organ. This blockage of a blood vessel by an embolus is called an embolism.
The heart, arteries, capillaries, and veins make up the body’s circulatory system. Blood is pumped with great force from the heart into the arteries. From there blood flows into the capillaries . Blood returns to the heart through the veins. As it moves through the veins back to the heart, blood flow slows. Sometimes this slower blood flow may lead to clot formation.
Heart Attacks In Numbers
A heart attack, also known as myocardial infarction, happens when a part of the heart is not receiving enough blood flow. The longer the heart is deprived of blood and oxygen, the greater the damage to the myocardium . Once damaged, the heart will be inefficient in pumping out blood.
One American suffers a heart attack every 40 seconds, according to the CDC. In fact, there are approximately 805,000 cases of heart attacks in the United States every year.
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Could Spike Protein In Moderna Pfizer Vaccines Cause Blood Clots Brain Inflammation And Heart Attacks
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April 14, 2021 On Dec. 8, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee received a public submission from;J. Patrick Whelan, M.D., Ph.D. The;submission;was in response to the;agencys;request for comments regarding vaccines against;SARS-CoV-2;in advance of the Dec. 10; meeting when the committee would review the;Pfizer/BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine for emergency use authorization .
Whelans training includes degrees in biochemistry, medicine and rheumatology. For 20 years, he worked as a pediatric rheumatologist. He currently specializes in treating children with;multisystem inflammatory syndrome , which has been associated with coronavirus infections.
In his;public submission, Whelan sought to alert the FDA about the potential for vaccines designed to create immunity to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein to instead cause injuries.
Specifically, Whelan was concerned that the new;mRNA vaccine technology;utilized by;Pfizer;and;Moderna;has the potential to cause microvascular injury to the brain, heart, liver and kidneys in ways that were not assessed in the safety trials.
Why was Whelan worried about the mRNA vaccines causing blood clots and inflammation?
Here is what we currently know about the impact of the virus outside the lungs.
Cardiovascular complications from COVID-19
Treatments For Arterial Thrombosis
If you develop arterial thrombosis, it may need to be treated with medicine or surgery.
- injections of a medicine called a thrombolytic which can dissolve some blood clots
- an operation to remove the clot
- an operation to widen the affected artery for example, an angioplasty
- surgery to divert blood around the blocked artery; for example,;a coronary artery bypass graft;
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What Is Coronary Artery Disease
Most heart attacks are caused by coronary artery disease . This is when a gradual build-up of fatty streaks form in the coronary arteries. These are the arteries that deliver oxygenated blood to the heart muscle. The build-up of fatty streaks makes the coronary arteries narrow and stiffen over time.
As the coronary arteries narrow, it becomes more difficult for oxygenated blood to reach the heart muscle, sometimes causing pain and discomfort known as angina.
If a piece of plaque cracks, it may cause a blood clot to form and block a coronary artery, cutting off the blood supply to a part of the heart muscle. This causes a heart attack.
The heart attack symptoms you feel during a heart attack;are caused by your heart muscle being starved of oxygen. This prevents your heart from beating as normal.
How Serious Is A Heart Attack
This often depends on the amount of heart muscle that is damaged. In many cases, only a small part of the heart muscle is damaged and then heals as a small patch of scar tissue. The heart can usually function normally with a small patch of scar tissue. A larger heart attack is more likely to be life-threatening or cause complications.
Even before treatments became available to restore blood flow, many people made a full recovery. With the help of modern treatment, particularly if you are given treatment within a few hours to restore blood flow, a higher percentage of people now make a full recovery.
Some possible complications include the following:
- Abnormal heart rhythms.
- A further heart attack;which may occur sometime in the future.
The most crucial time is during the first day or so. If no complications arise and you are well after a couple of weeks then you have a good chance of making a full recovery. A main objective then is to get back into normal life and to minimise the risk of a further heart attack.
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Other Types Of Blood Clot
As well as arterial thrombosis, there are several other types of blood clot, including:
- venous thromboembolism a blood clot in a vein
- DVT a blood clot in one of the deep veins in the body, usually in the leg
- embolism where the blood flow in an artery is blocked by a foreign body; this can be a blood clot or something else such as an air bubble
- pulmonary embolism a blood clot in the pulmonary artery, which transports blood from the heart to the lungs
Page last reviewed: 09 January 2020 Next review due: 09 January 2023
What Should I Do If I Have Symptoms Of Coronary Artery Disease
Because the symptoms of coronary artery disease can be symptoms of a heart attack, you need to seek immediate help. if you think you are having symptoms of a heart attack.
If a blood clot in a coronary artery has broken loose and moved into your brain, it can cause a stroke, although this is rare. Symptoms of a stroke include:
- Drooping on one side of your face. Look at your smile in a mirror or ask someone to check your smile.
- Arm weakness or numbness.
- Difficulty speaking/slurred speech.
If you experience any of these symptoms, CALL 911. Every minute you spend without treatment increases your risk of long-term damage.
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How Is Coronary Artery Disease Treated
Your healthcare provider will talk to you about the best treatment plan for you. Follow your treatment plan to reduce your risk of problems that can result from coronary artery disease, like heart attack and stroke.
The first step in treating coronary artery disease is to reduce your risk factors. This involves making changes in your lifestyle.
- Dont smoke. If you smoke or use tobacco products, quit. Ask your healthcare providers about ways to quit, including programs and medications.
- Manage health problems like high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes.
- Eat a heart-healthy diet. Talk to your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian about ways to change your diet to reduce your risk of heart disease. Good dietary choices include the Mediterranean and DASH diets.
- Limit alcohol use. Limit daily drinks to no more than one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.
- Increase your activity level. Exercise helps you lose weight, improve your physical condition and relieve stress. Most people can reduce their risk of heart attack by doing 30 minutes of walking five times per week or walking 10,000 steps per day. Talk to your healthcare provider before you start any exercise program.
Your healthcare provider will recommend medications to best manage your risk factors for heart disease. Types of heart-related medications that may be selected for you include:
Procedures and surgery
Symptoms Of A Heart Attack
The following are the most common symptoms of a heart attack. But each person may have slightly different symptoms.
- Severe pressure, fullness, squeezing, pain, or discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts for more than a few minutes
- Pain or discomfort that spreads to the shoulders, neck, arms, or jaw
- Chest pain that gets worse
- Chest pain that doesn’t get better with rest or by taking nitroglycerin
- Chest pain that happens along with any of these symptoms:
- Sweating, cool, clammy skin, or paleness
- Shortness of breath
- Unexplained weakness or fatigue
- Rapid or irregular pulse
Although chest pain is the key warning sign of a heart attack, it may be confused with other conditions. These include indigestion, pleurisy, pneumonia, tenderness of the cartilage that attaches the front of the ribs to the breastbone, and heartburn. Always see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
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Can Drinking Water Prevent A Heart Attack
A study in the American Journal of Medical Epidemiology found that participants who drink five or more glasses of plain water per day have a much lower risk of fatal coronary heart disease, compared to those who drink less than two glasses per day. Its even more important to drink before bed because it helps improve
What Should I Expect If I Have Coronary Artery Disease Can It Be Cured
Technically coronary artery disease cant be cured. If youve been diagnosed with coronary artery disease, follow your healthcare providers treatment plan to help prevent your condition from getting worse. Your treatment plan may include procedures and surgery to increase the blood supply to your heart, lifestyle changes to target your risk factors and medications.
If your coronary artery disease has led to a heart attack, your healthcare provider can recommend a cardiac rehabilitation program to reduce your risk of future heart problems, regain strength and improve the quality of your life.
It is important to keep all follow-up appointments and have all tests ordered by your healthcare provider. These are needed to keep track of your condition, monitor how well your treatment plan is working and make adjustments if needed.
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Is Mild Chest Pain Normal
Chest pain may arise and subside every few minutes or over several days. The cause may be related to the heart, the muscles, the digestive system, or psychological factors. Underlying causes of chest pain may be mild, as in the case of acid reflux. Or, they may be serious and indicate, for example, a heart attack.
Treatment To Restore Blood Flow In The Blocked Coronary Artery
There are two treatments that can restore blood flow back through the blocked artery:
- Coronary angioplasty. Ideally this is the best treatment if it is available and can be done within a few hours of symptoms starting.
- An injection of a clot-busting medicine is an alternative to emergency angioplasty. It can be given easily and quickly in most situations. Some ambulance crews are trained to give this.
Both the above treatments usually work well to restore blood flow and greatly improve the outlook. The most crucial factor is the speed at which one or other treatment is given after symptoms have started.
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Treatment For A Heart Attack
The goal of treatment for a heart attack is to relieve pain, preserve the heart muscle function, and prevent death.
Treatment in the emergency department may include:
- Intravenous therapy, such as nitroglycerin and morphine
- Continuous monitoring of the heart and vital signs
- Oxygen therapy to improve oxygenation to the damaged heart muscle
- Pain medicine to decrease pain. This, in turn, decreases the workload of the heart. The oxygen demand of the heart decreases.
- Cardiac medicine such as beta-blockers to promote blood flow to the heart, improve the blood supply, prevent arrhythmias, and decrease heart rate and blood pressure
- Fibrinolytic therapy. This is the intravenous infusion of a medicine that dissolves the blood clot, restoring blood flow.
- Antithrombin or antiplatelet therapy with aspirin or clopidogrel. This is used to prevent further blood clotting.
- Antihyperlipidemics. These medicines lower lipids in the blood, particularly low density lipid cholesterol. Statins are a group of antihyperlipidemic medicines. They include simvastatin, atorvastatin, and pravastatin. Bile acid sequestrantscolesevelam, cholestyramine, and colestipoland nicotinic acid are two other types of medicines that may be used to lower cholesterol levels.
You may need other procedures to restore blood flow to the heart. Those procedures are described below.
Types Of Heart Attack
The type of heart attack you experienced determines the treatments that your medical team will recommend. These include:
- ST- segment elevation myocardial infarction : This type of heart attack occurs when a coronary artery is completely blocked.As a result, a large portion of the heart cannot receive blood, and the heart muscle quickly begins to die. STEMI are the deadliest type of heart attacks.
- Non-ST segment elevation myocardial infarction : This type of heart attack occurs when a coronary artery is severely restricted but not entirely blocked. NSTEMIs usually cause less damage to the heart than their counterpart, STEMI.
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Is The Covid Vaccine Linked To An Increased Risk Of Blood Clots
Researchers from the University of Oxford addressed the associated risk of blood clots linked to the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine.
Writing in the British Medical Journal , the research team pointed out that the risk of a blood clot is much higher following a SARS-CoV-2 infection.
So while the Covid vaccine has been linked to an increased risk of blood clots, such a risk is much higher if you catch coronavirus.
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