What To Think About
You may have regular blood tests to monitor how the medicine is working in your body. Your doctor will likely let you know when you need to have the tests.
If your doctor recommends daily aspirin, don’t substitute non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as ibuprofen or naproxen , for the aspirin. NSAIDS relieve pain and inflammation much like aspirin does, but they do not affect blood clotting in the same way that aspirin does. NSAIDs do not lower your risk of another heart attack. In fact, NSAIDs may raise your risk for a heart attack or stroke. Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
If you need to take an NSAID for a long time, such as for pain, talk with your doctor to see if it is safe for you. For more information about daily aspirin and NSAIDs, see Aspirin to Prevent Heart Attack and Stroke.
Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection
SCAD is a type of heart attack that happens when the inner lining of a coronary artery tears for no clear reason, slowing or blocking blood flow down the artery.
SCAD can occur in otherwise healthy people who do not have the typical risk factors of heart disease. And according to an article in Clinical Cardiology , about 90% of SCADs happen to women between the age of 30 and 60.
What Not To Do After A Heart Attack
Give your heart a chance to heal after a heart attack. This means you may need to modify your normal routine and reconsider certain activities for several weeks.
Gradually ease back into your everyday routine so you dont risk a relapse. You may have to modify your daily activities if theyre stressful.
It may take up to 3 months before your doctor gives you the OK to go back to work.
Depending on the stress level of your job, you may need to significantly cut back on your workload or ease back into it on a part-time basis.
You may not be able to drive a vehicle for at least a week after your heart attack. This restriction may be longer if you have complications.
Each state has different laws, but the general rule is that your condition must be stable for at least 3 weeks before youre allowed to drive again.
Your doctor will likely advise you to hold off on sex and other physical activities for at least 2 to 3 weeks after your heart attack.
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What Increases Your Risk
- Family history of early CAD.
- Age. The risk increases in men after age 45 and in women after age 55.
A Brief Overview Of Heart Attacks
A heart attack occurs when blood flow to the heart is blocked by buildup inside the arteries. If this buildup goes untreated, there is a larger risk of severe damage to the heart muscle or even death. Knowing how to spot a heart attack when it occurs can be key to the recovery process.
Note that it is crucial to know the difference between cardiac arrest and a heart attack. With a heart attack, there are a few steps you can take to ease the situation while medical help arrives for the victim, but cardiac arrest requires medical attention immediately.
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What Can I Do To Recover After A Heart Attack
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If youve had a heart attack, your heart may be damaged. This could affect your hearts rhythm and its ability to pump blood to the rest of the body. You may also be at risk for another heart attack or conditions such as stroke, kidney disorders, and peripheral arterial disease .
You can lower your chances of having future health problems following a heart attack with these steps:
- Physical activityTalk with your health care team about the things you do each day in your life and work. Your doctor may want you to limit work, travel, or sexual activity for some time after a heart attack.
- Lifestyle changesEating a healthier diet, increasing physical activity, quitting smoking, and managing stressin addition to taking prescribed medicinescan help improve your heart health and quality of life. Ask your health care team about attending a program called cardiac rehabilitation to help you make these lifestyle changes.
- Cardiac rehabilitationCardiac rehabilitation is an important program for anyone recovering from a heart attack, heart failure, or other heart problem that required surgery or medical care. Cardiac rehab is a supervised program that includes
- Physical activity
- Education about healthy living, including healthy eating, taking medicine as prescribed, and ways to help you quit smoking
- Counseling to find ways to relieve stress and improve mental health
What To Do When Having A Heart Attack Alone
The steps of what to do to do when having a heart attack alone are very similar to the ones listed above.
- Try or get someone near you to
- Chew and swallow an aspirin if you have one handy
- Try to keep calm as best you can
- If youre in your home and conscious, try to unlock and be near your front door so responders can find you easily
Though the internet is littered with home remedies for stopping heart attacks, listen to your doctor for advice on heart attack prevention. You may be at greater risk if youre an older male, have pre-existing heart conditions, and partake in unhealthy habits like smoking.
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What To Do If Someone Is Having A Heart Attack
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Each year, tens of thousands of Americans survive a heart attack, go back to their daily routine, and enjoy normal lives. It is important to recognize the symptoms of a heart attack and to act quickly to make sure the person has a better chance of recovering.
It is also important to know that symptoms of a heart attack can differ between men and women, and that not all heart attacks are the same. By learning some basic facts, you can stay safe and help others.
What Should I Do In A Heart Attack Emergency
The first thing to do is phone 999 immediately for an ambulance.
You should then sit and rest while you wait for the ambulance to arrive.
Aspirin can sometimes help, but dont get up and look around for an aspirin, as this may put unnecessary strain on your heart.
If youre not allergic to aspirin and have some next to you – or if there is someone with you who can fetch them for you – chew one adult aspirin tablet . If the aspirin isnt nearby, however, anyone with you should stay with you and not go looking for aspirin.
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of A Heart Attack
The most common symptom of a heart attack is chest pain or discomfort. Other symptoms of a heart attack include:
- shortness of breath
- to the neck, jaw or shoulders
Most symptoms of a heart attack are the same for men and women.
Women are more likely to feel some discomfort in the chest rather than a sharp pain or tightness. The milder symptoms do not mean that a woman’s heart attack is any less severe than a man’s heart attack. Any symptoms of a heart attack should be taken seriously.
Heart With Muscle Damage And A Blocked Artery
A less common cause of heart attack is a severe spasm of a coronary artery. The spasm cuts off blood flow through the artery. Spasms can occur in coronary arteries that aren’t affected by atherosclerosis.
Heart failure is a condition in which the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. Arrhythmias are irregular heartbeats. Ventricular fibrillation is a life-threatening arrhythmia that can cause death if not treated right away.
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Preventing A Heart Attack
There are 5 main steps you can take to reduce your risk of having a heart attack :
- smokers should quit smoking
- lose weight if you’re overweight or obese
- do regular exercise adults should do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week, unless advised otherwise by the doctor in charge of your care
- eat a low-fat, high-fibre diet, including wholegrains and at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day
- moderate your alcohol consumption
Manage Other Risk Factors
Heart disease can run in families, but the majority of heart attacks may be attributed to lifestyle choices.
Aside from diet, exercise, and smoking habits, its important to manage other risk factors that might contribute to future heart attacks.
Talk to your doctor about:
- mental health concerns, such as anxiety and depression
- alcohol consumption
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Know Your Heart Care Options
You cant predict if a heart attack will happen. But knowing where you can get the right heart care is one thing you can do. Our nationally recognized cardiac centers include:
- Regions Hospital Heart Center in St. Paul, MN, is consistently recognized as one of the nations top cardiac centers. Youll get the highest level of care in every situation, starting with emergency treatment all the way through the recovery process.
- Park Nicollet Heart and Vascular Center, located in St. Louis Park, MN, is nationally recognized for offering outstanding, responsive care for heart attacks and other cardiac conditions. This center is accredited as a Mission: Lifeline® Heart Attack Receiving Center by the American Heart Association, so you can expect first-rate treatment, especially in time-sensitive situations.
- Cardiac rehabilitation services are offered across the Twin Cities and western Wisconsin. Recovering from a heart attack takes time, but you dont have to go through it alone. We offer personalized cardiac rehabilitation at seven convenient locations, so its easy to get the support you and your heart need.
Symptoms Of Sudden Cardiac Arrest
Sudden cardiac arrest is when the heart stops and person falls unconscious.
The person may:
- appear not to be breathing
- not be moving
- not respond to any stimulation, like being touched or spoken to
This is a leading cause of premature death, but with immediate treatment, many lives can be saved. The heart stops because the electrical rhythm that controls the heart is replaced by a disorganised electrical rhythm. The quicker this can be treated, the greater the chance of successful resuscitation.
Read more on cardiac arrest from the British Heart Foundation
Control Cholesterol And Blood Pressure
To reduce your risk of a heart attack, you will need to control your cholesterol and manage your blood pressure. Quitting smoking, changing the way you eat, and getting more exercise can help. But if these things don’t work, you may also need to take medicines.
When Should I See My Doctor
If calling triple zero does not work on your mobile, try calling 112. Early treatment could save a life.
See your doctor regularly to manage your general health, test for heart disease risk factors and help you take steps to prevent a heart attack.
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How Do Doctors Know What Kind Of Heart Attack Youve Had
You cant predict the outcome of a heart attack by your symptoms or how severe they are. Thats why symptoms that suggest a possible heart attack should never be ignored.
How well you fare after a heart attack depends on how quickly you act, Dr. Campbell says. The sooner you get emergency care, the better the chance you will suffer less permanent damage to your heart.
If you go to the ER with heart-attack symptom, youll be treated right away. Your blood will be examined for any enzymes indicating theres been damage to your hearts muscle. And a noninvasive echocardiogram is performed to see how well your heart is pumping.
Still it may take several hours to determine whether youve had a heart attack and what kind of treatment is needed. That means, if youre not sure what your symptoms mean, the thought of spending several hours in the ER might discourage you from seeking care. Dont let it! Dr. Campbell advises that its much wiser to err on the safe side.
Its better you spend several hours in the ER than learn the damage has been done, and your heart cant be fixed, he says.
What Makes You Worry That Chest Pain Is Serious Like A Heart Attack
When is chest pain serious? That dull burning feeling in your chest doesn’t seem to be going away, and even feels like it is getting worse. Is it a heart attack, or ?
It’s a vexing question, one that millions of people and their doctors face each year. What’s the problem? Chest pain can stem from dozens of conditions besides , from pancreatitis to pneumonia or panic attack.
Millions of Americans with chest pain are seen in hospital emergency departments every year. Only 20% of them are diagnosed with a heart attack or an episode of unstable , a warning sign that a heart attack may happen soon. A few have another potentially life-threatening problem, such as pulmonary embolism or aortic dissection . Some are experiencing “regular” angina, which occurs when part of the heart isn’t getting as much oxygen-rich blood as it needs during periods of physical exertion or emotional stress. Most of them, though, had a condition unrelated to the heart or arteries.
The other tricky problem with heart attacks is that different people experience them in different ways. Some have classic chest pain. Others have jaw pain or back pain. Still others become breathless, or extremely fatigued, or nauseated.
What Are The Symptoms Of A Heart Attack
If you have any of the symptoms below, you could be having a heart attack. If symptoms are severe, get worse quickly, or last longer than 10 minutes, call triple zero immediately and ask for an ambulance. If calling triple zero does not work on your mobile try calling 112.
The most common symptoms of a heart attack include:
- chest pain pressure or tightness in the chest and arms that may spread to the jaw, neck or back
- shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Women may experience different symptoms, such as:
- breathlessness and generally feeling unwell
- tightness or discomfort in the arms
- back pain or pressure
Heart attack symptoms differ from person to person. Some people experience no warning signs before a heart attack while others feel symptoms days or weeks in advance. Nearly 1 in 3 men and nearly 4 in 10 women who have heart attacks dont feel any chest pain at all. Chest pains may also come and go.
Women Have Heart Attacks Too
We know that women tend to wait longer before calling 999 after experiencing heart attack symptoms. In the UK, an average of three women die of coronary heart disease every hour, many of them due to a heart attack.You dramatically reduce your chance of survival if you don’t call 999 straight away.
Most heart attacks are caused by coronary heart disease .
CHD causes your coronary arteries to become narrowed by a gradual build-up of fatty deposits called atheroma.
If a piece of atheroma breaks off, a blood clot forms around this to try and repair the damage to the artery wall.
This clot can block your coronary artery either a partial blockage or total blockage . This causes your heart muscle to be starved of blood and oxygen.
Other less common causes of a heart attack include:
- hypoxia .
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Ake In Physical Activity
Being physically active will also help to prevent a heart attack. According to the American Heart Association, adults should try to get at least 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise every week when possible.
Adults who are already active can increase their activity levels to give themselves even better prevention against heart attacks.
How To Stop A Heart Attack
Many people worry about experiencing a heart attack in their lifetime, and with good reason: its estimated that an American has a heart attack every 40 seconds .
Even though a heart attack can be deadly, tens of thousands of Americans survive heart attacks every year.
Acting quickly when you suspect a heart attack is coming on can greatly improve your chances for survival.
Most of the time, heart attacks start slowly with just mild discomfort and pain, giving warning signs before they strike. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call 911 or ask someone to call 911 immediately.
These could be signs of a heart attack:
- Discomfort in the chest, especially the center, that lasts more than a few minutes or comes and goes. The discomfort may feel like heaviness, fullness, squeezing, or pain.
- Discomfort in the upper body parts such as the arms, back, neck, jaw, or stomach. This may feel like pain or general discomfort.
- Shortness of breath. This may come with or without chest discomfort.
- Unusual sensations such as a cold sweat, nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness, or dizziness. Women are more likely than men to experience these kinds of symptoms.
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