If you think may be experiencing the symptoms of a heart attack,
do not wait to see if they go away. If you experience discomfort or
pain in the chest, unusual shortness of breath (especially if you
are a woman), heart palpitations, discomfort in the arms, back,
neck or jaw, bluish fingernails, nausea (women) or lightheadedness,
or have another condition such as diabetes or high blood pressure,
call 911 immediately and ask for an ambulance.
a heart attack?
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Life after a heart attack
with patients and caregivers
What to Do If You Think You Are Having a Heart
Call 9-1-1 immediately. Tell the operator you think you are
having a heart attack. The first three to six hours after the onset
of a heart attack are critical. It is important to get medical
attention at once. Delaying medical attention can lead to permanent
damage to the he...
Prognosis Heart attacks may be rapidly fatal, evolve into a chronic disabling condition, or lead to full recovery. The long-term prognosis for both length and quality of life after a heart attack depends on its severity, the amount of damage sustained by the heart muscle, and the preventive measures taken afterward. Patients who have had a heart attack have a higher risk of a second heart attack. Although no tests can absolutely predict whether another heart attack will occur, patients can avoid having another heart attack by healthy lifestyle changes and adherence to medical treatments. Two-thirds of patients who have suffered a heart attack, however, do not take the necessary steps to prevent another. Heart attack also increases the risk for other heart problems, including heart failure, abnormal heart rhythms, heart valve damage, and stroke. Higher Risk Individuals. A heart attack is always more serious in certain people, including: Elderly People with a history of heart disease or multi...
Treatment Treatment options for heart attack, and acute coronary syndrome, include: Oxygen therapy Relieving pain and discomfort using nitroglycerin or morphine Controlling any arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms) Blocking further clotting (if possible), using aspirin or clopidogrel (Plavix), as well as possibly anticoagulant drugs such as heparin Opening up the artery that is blocked as soon as possible, by performing angioplasty or using medicines that open up the clot Giving the patient beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, or ACE inhibitor drugs to help the heart muscle and arteries work better Immediate Treatments to Support the Patient Early supportive treatments are similar for patients who have ACS or those who have had a heart attack. Oxygen. Oxygen is almost always administered right away, usually through a tube that enters through the nose. Aspirin. The patient is given aspirin if one was not taken at home. Medications for Relieving Symptoms. Nitroglycerin. Most patients will receive...
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