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Heart attack first aid

  • Definition

    A heart attack is a medical emergency.

    The average person waits 3 hours before seeking help for symptoms of a heart attack. Many heart attack victims die before they reach a hospital. The sooner someone gets to the emergency room, the better the chance of survival. Prompt medical treatment also reduces the amount of damage done to the heart following an attack.


    Alternative Names

    First aid - heart attack; First aid - cardiopulmonary arrest; First aid - cardiac arrest


    Considerations

    Heart disease is the leading cause of death in America today.


    Causes

    A heart attack occurs when the blood flow that carries oxygen to the heart is blocked. The heart muscle becomes starved for oxygen and begins to die. See heart attack for more specific causes.