Did you know that heart attacks are one of the leading causes of death in the world? Studies have shown that cardiovascular disease kills 17.9 million people each year.
Each year, approximately 790,000 people in the United States suffer a heart attack. With this high number, you have probably heard of a heart attack in someone close to you.
The following graph shows the number of deaths from cardiovascular disease worldwide.
Healthcare systems and hospitals have completely redefined the treatment of heart attack.
Fortunately, most survivors lead happy and fulfilling lives when you realize you are having a heart attack and take immediate action. Most ambulances can now remotely transmit patients’ electrocardiogram (ECG/ECG) waves while the patient is en route to the emergency department.
This is very advantageous because emergency department physicians and staff can be ready to work with the patient as soon as he or she arrives at the hospital and the time to rescue the patient can be reduced to one hour.
What is a heart attack?
Photo by Karolina Grabowska of Peksels
As we all know, the main function of the heart is to pump oxygenated blood through the coronary artery to the body. A heart attack occurs when the blood flow to the heart is blocked. If this blockage is not immediately opened, the heart tissue no longer receives oxygen and dies immediately.
It is usually caused by the rupture of an atheroma plaque, which creates a blood clot that blocks the artery.
Once a heart attack occurs, immediate medical attention is essential. If the device is cleaned in two or three hours, it will be less damaged than a device that has been sitting for five or six hours.
Some statistics on heart attacks
Signs and symptoms of a heart attack
Recognizing the symptoms of a heart attack is an important key to getting immediate medical attention. If you feel you are having a heart attack, seek medical attention immediately without wasting time.
Remember, every second counts in a heart attack.
Although chest pain is a classic symptom of a heart attack, other symptoms should not be excluded, such as
- Heartburn as a symptom
- Respiratory Difficulties
- Heavy sweating
- Pain in the shoulders, upper abdomen or back.
- Pain in one or both hands
It may sound strange, but one-third of patients have no chest pain, especially those who are elderly or diabetic.
Sometimes the symptoms can be vague. They come on gradually, stop and start again.
The dangers and consequences of a heart attack?
The outcome of a heart attack is difficult to predict because it depends primarily on the amount of heart muscle that dies.
It is mainly determined by :
- Which coronary artery is blocked.
- The time that elapsed between the attack and the opening of the artery.
- Exact location of the blocked artery….
A clog that is cleared within a few hours causes less damage than one that remains untreated for five to six hours.
A blockage near the arterial origin affects the heart muscle more than a blockage that occurs further up the artery.
What if you think you’re having a heart attack?
If you think you’re having a heart attack, there are a few steps you can take to get immediate help.
1. call the emergency number
With a heart attack, the longer you wait to go to the hospital, the lower your chances of survival.
To prevent damage to the heart muscle, it is very important to get immediate medical attention. Unfortunately, most people do not recognize the symptoms and it is too late when they seek medical attention. You have a better chance of survival if you go to the hospital within an hour of having a heart attack.
Image by F. Muhammad from Pixabay.
Calling the national emergency number (911 in the case of the United States/999 in Malaysia) is the same as going to your medical facility. Treatment can be started before you arrive at the hospital.
If you are in a public place, such as a university, library, store or even a workplace, chances are there is a defibrillator there.
Defibrillators are electronic devices that can restore a normal heart rhythm by sending waves of electrical impulses to the heart. This device can correct arrhythmias or even restore the heart rhythm when the heart suddenly stops.
Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) can be found in many public places to save lives. Even untrained bystanders can use this device with easy-to-follow instructions.
2. take aspirin
Studies have shown that taking regular aspirin (325 milligrams) can help minimize heart attacks.
Aspirin helps slow blood clotting. When taken after a heart attack, this medication helps minimize the size of blood clots that can form.
3. stay calm
When the emergency team arrives, calmly explain what your symptoms are and what medications you are taking.
Don’t worry if your symptoms turn out to be false alarms; remember, you’re not playing with your life when it comes to a heart attack.
4. cough infection
Medical experts do not recommend artificial ventilation for coughs, but it is worth a try if you feel like you are losing control.
Some sources suggest that a deep breath followed by a deep cough can raise blood pressure for a second or two, pumping more blood to the brain.
Sources also say that if the heart is not beating abnormally, it will help it to beat normally again.
5. water and cyanide pepper
Another recommendation is to drink a glass of water with a spoonful of cyanide pepper while waiting for the ambulance.
Some online sources claim that consuming cyanide pepper helps to increase heart rate and balance the circulatory system. Others claim it can stop bleeding immediately.
What should you not do if you have a heart attack?
1. do not take nitroglycerin.
Although some drugs, such as nitroglycerin, can temporarily dilate blood vessels to improve blood flow to the heart, they are of no use in a heart attack.
Experts say this substance is only useful for treating angina when there is an imbalance between the demand for and supply of blood by the heart.
2. Do not apply pressure to the chest.
Pressure on the chest does not help if the heart does not stop beating completely.
It is best to remain calm and wait for medical personnel to arrive.
3. Do not drive to the hospital.
If you are having a heart attack, it is best to call the national emergency number and wait for an ambulance to arrive.
It is not advisable to drive to the hospital if you think it is not necessary. For example, if you are in a remote rural area and have to wait for an ambulance for hours, it may be more dangerous to wait for health professionals than to arrange your transportation.
How do you help someone who is having a heart attack?
If you think someone is having a heart attack, the first thing you do is call 911.
After the conversation, help them get into a comfortable position to relieve their hearts.
The best position is to sit on the floor, resting your head and shoulders and bending your knees. If you can find pillows, try placing them behind the person’s lower back and under the knees.
Ask them if they are allergic to aspirin. If not, give them 300 mg of aspirin and ask them to chew it slowly.
As you help the person stay calm, monitor their heart rate, breathing, and reaction level.
If you think you are having a heart attack, don’t worry, because you are not the only one who can have one.
The most helpful thing you can do for yourself or someone who has had a heart attack is to call 911 without wasting time.
In the ambulance, medical personnel will measure your heart activity, which will be transmitted wirelessly to the hospitals. Ambulance personnel will be well prepared and ready when you arrive at the hospital.
Frequently asked questions
What are the chances of surviving a heart attack?
Today, more than 90% of people experience a myocardial infarction. This is the technical term for a heart attack; it refers to an area of damaged and dying heart muscle caused by an interruption in blood supply. Part of the decline in mortality is due to the ability of doctors to diagnose and treat smaller, less fatal heart attacks.
How can I stop a heart attack immediately?
Acting quickly can save lives. If you act quickly after symptoms appear, drugs that burn clots and open arteries can stop a heart attack, and a catheter with an inserted stent can open a blocked blood vessel. The longer you wait to treat, the greater the chance of survival and the greater the chance of heart damage.
Can I survive a heart attack?
Heart attacks are often curable if diagnosed early. However, they can be fatal. Women are less likely than men to survive a heart attack.
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