Treatment

Heart Attack: Causes, Types, Symptoms and Treatment

June 13th, 2018
Heart Attack: Causes, Types, Symptoms and Treatment

Heart attack used to be a fatal cause of death in several older individuals. However, in recent years, due to over accentuation on a lifestyle complemented with over tension and inability to focus on a healthy lifestyle, people as younger as 15 might encounter this problem. Therefore, it is necessary to know what s heart attack, what are its symptoms, what its warning signs are and how one can prevent it.

What is heart attack?

Heart attack is the death of a particular segment of heart. When this particular sort of “death” happens, the victim feels immense chest pains which mostly comes coupled with a loss of consciousness. The latter part is because of the lack of blood supply and it ends up stopping the flow of blood supply into the heart.

What are the causes of heart attack?

When it comes to cause of heart attack, it is just one, artery blockage that blocks the supply of blood to the heart that in turns causes the death of particular segment. However, the causes of heart attack can also be construed as the risk factors that escalate the chances of its occurrence:

  1. Age of an individual: Heart attack is more prevalent in people who have crossed 45 years of age.
  2. Angina: Basically a word given to the lack of oxygen in the body due to lack of blood supply n the heart
  3. High levels of cholesterol: If the amount of bad cholesterol is high, so are the chances of heart attack.
  4. Diabetes: Being a diabetic would increase your risk of heart problems pretty fast.
  5. Fatty diet: If you engage in too much fatty diet filed with meats, and saturated fats, the risk of titular condition sky rockets to an extreme extent.
  6. Hyper tension: Much like the previous cause, this reason too is prevalent in the younger generation’s encounter with heart related issues.
  7. Obesity: Maintaining the weight has become quite an ordeal as people do not have as much time as they used to. This weight can increase the pressure on heart.
  8. Smoking is one of the risks
  9. HIV: People infected with HIV have a 50 % higher risk of encountering cardiac death.
  10. Physical inactivity causes the circulation to slow down and artery to develop a clot eventually and the end result is always the one mentioned in the title.

Signs and symptoms of heart attack

Now, you must already know that heart attack tends to be fast, it tends to be painful and it can be fatal. Therefore, there are some warning signs that you need to take in to account so that you can act fast and get the immediate medical attention necessary:

  1. Nausea
  2. Coughing
  3. Vomiting
  4. Crushing chest pain
  5. Shortness of breath
  6. Feeling generally awful all over the body
  7. Sweats and fear
  8. Breathe is shorter
  9. Pain in the neck, arms, neck and jaw
  10. Breath is short all of a sudden.

Also get detail abbout the warning signs of heart attack in women

What happens during the heart attack?

In this particular section, what happens and internally and the eventual symptom externally of what happens during heart attack.

  1. Internal happenings: The heart muscles get their supply from an interconnected cluster of blood vessels called the coronary arteries. Now, these arteries tend to have an extremely small diameter. The muscles of the heart are in constant need of blood and if not given proper attention they can be damaged. To that end, when the coronary arteries get damaged or a clot is formed in them either due to cholesterol of build up fatty deposits, the supply of blood is disrupted and angina like symptoms appear. When the supply is totally blocked, heart attack occurs.
  2. External happenings: During the initial disruptions, the body would feel weaker each time and when this grows into a full on blockage, the chest would feel like someone dragged it through the fields.

What are the types of heart attack (myocardial infarctions)?

There are three types of myocardial infarctions and they are as follows:

  1. ST segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI):
    1. This is the classic version
    2. The coronary artery is completely blocked
  2. Non-ST segment elevation myocardial infarction (NSTEMI):
    1. The coronary artery is only partially blocked
  3. Coronary spasm, a spastic or unstable condition of angina:
    1. The silent version of the condition as there is no blockage.
    2. It happens due to the tightness of the arteries, rather than the blockage.

Immediate action during heart attacks

Heart attack is a detriment that can go either ways. However, if the initial care is lacking in any manner, the situation would prove to be fatal. Therefore, it is said that the sooner the patient is taken to the doctor during the attack, the better the chances of survival would be. However, during the attack, there might be cases in which victim just stops breathing. To that end, it is necessary to keep CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) at the ready. However, this is to be done immediately and it involves the following:

  1. A defibrillator: Using equipments.
  2. A manual chest compression: Using both the hands to compress the chest repeatedly (about 100 times per minute).

The second part can be undertaken by anyone. However, there are chances that the rinds would be broken and to that end, it is necessary or you to make sure that you are firm, yet gentle.

How is the infarction diagnosed?

The diagnosis of heart attack involves the following:

  1. Electrocardiogram to check the damage to the heart
  2. Blood tests to check the levels of cardiac enzymes that can contribute to the heart muscle damage.
  3. Echocardiography is a test based on imaging that checks which region is the heart is pumping and which is not.
  4. Cardiac Catheterization is done during the very first hour of the attack to visualize the blocked region of the artery.

Treatment

The treatment of this issue is based on mitigating the damage done to the heart

  1. Use of antiplatelets like aspirin to prevent clotting in the regions it is not needed.
  2. Introduction of beta blockers to the body
  3. ACE inhibitors or Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors to put a moratorium of cardiac enzymes
  4. Statins to lower the cholesterol levels in the blood.
  5. Angioplasty to widen the arteries and increase the blood flow.
  6. Bypass surgery which is an intensive surgery which is basically grafting the damaged coronary artery.

Cost of treatment

Treating heart attack required both the medicinal and the surgical means and therefore the cost involved with the process can be quite steep. However, when it comes to India, you can expect affordable treatments for all the facets of treatment and with a high quality.          

Also know the diet that helps to keep your heart healthy.

 

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