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Heart Attack

heart attack

Does the word heart attack scare you? Heart attack is a serious medical condition where the blood supply to the heart is suddenly blocked most often by a blood clot. Improper supply of blood to the heart can seriously damage the muscles of the heart. It is found that most men above the age of 50 with a family history of heart disease are more likely to have heart attack.
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Some of the Major risk factors which lead to heart attack are as follows

  1. Family history of heart disease
  2. High blood pressure
  3. Obesity
  4. Smoking
  5. Diabetes
  6. Stress
  7. High cholesterol

What are the symptoms of heart attack?

  1. Shortness of breath
  2. Feeling anxious
  3. Chest pain i.e. the chest can feel like it is being squeezed or pressed in the center this pain can further spread from chest to the arms, jaw, back, arms etc.
  4. Feeling dizzy or light headed
  5. Sweating
  6. Sense of anxiety
  7. Coughing
  8. Feeling sick
  9. Vomiting
Often the chest pain is severe; however some people may only experience minor or no pain at all.

How to diagnose heart attack?

Heart attack is diagnosed based on the symptoms and test results below are some of the steps to diagnose heart attack

  1. ECG :This test helps to know the amount of damage occurred to your heart muscles and where exactly it has occurred; this also helps to monitor your heart rate and rhythm.
  2. Blood tests :It helps to measures the levels of cardiac enzymes which indicate the heart muscle damage. These enzymes are necessary for the functioning of the heart cells. When the muscles of your heart get injured. All the contents of the heart muscle cells including the enzymes are released into your blood stream when the cells get injured. The doctor can determine the size of the heart attack and can also find approximate time when the heart attack started. Apart from this Troponin levels will also be measured. Troponins are proteins found inside the cells of the heart which is released when they are damaged. Detecting troponion in the blood may lead to heart attack.
  3. EchocardiographyThis test can be done during and after the heart attack which will help to know how the heart is pumping .This can also help to find injuries caused to the structure of the heart during heart attack.
  4. Cardiac catheterization: This test will help to directly visualize the blocked artery which will help your doctor to find the suitable procedure to treat the blockage.

How is a heart attack treated?

Proper treatment can help to prevent or limit the damage made to the heart muscle. Taking immediate actions can save your life. Call ambulance immediately at the first symptom of heart attack. If a heart attack is suspected certain treatments are started right away before the condition become worse

  1. Aspirin is given in order to prevent further blood clot
  2. Oxygen therapy
  3. Nitroglycerin to improve blood flow through the coronory arteries.It also reduces the workload of your heart.
  4. Treatment for chest pain

Once the diagnosis of heart attack is confirmed the patient is immediately treated by the doctors in order to restore blood flow through the blood vessels . There are two main treatments known as clot busting medicines and percutaneous coronary intervention which helps to open blocked coronary arteries

What steps should be taken to reduce the risk of heart attack?

Eat Healthy Foods
  1. Eat foods that are healthy for your heart such as products which are fat free or low in fat
  2. Eat fruits such as bananas, pear, oranges, pears, apples
  3. Eat vegetables such as carrots, cabbages etc.
  4. Whole grains
  5. Avoid eating sugary foods and beverages, red meat etc.
Maintain a healthy weight

Being overweight can lead to many heart related problems so it is very important to maintain a healthy weight which will help you to reduce the risk of heart diseases and improve the overall health. For this you have to follow a healthy diet and an active life style.

Manage Stress

Stress leads to many problems, it has been found that many people get heart attack when they are emotionally upset. Many people start drinking, smoking or over eating in order to cope with stress which can further increase the risk of heart attack and many other heart related problems. So it’s very important to manage stress.

Some of the ways to manage stress are :
  1. Regular exercise
  2. Meditation
  3. Relaxation therapy
  4. Walk
  5. Spend little time in nature
  6. Physical activity
  7. Share your emotions with your friends and family members
  8. Donor bottle up your emotions
Physical Activity

Routine physical activity can reduce the risk of many heart related problems. It also reduces the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, excess weight, LDL (bad cholesterol). Physical activity helps to raise the level of HDL (good cholesterol); taking a little time for physical activities out of your busy schedule will keep you healthy.

Avoid smoking

Smoking can increase the risk of heart attack and many other heart related problems. Consult a doctor if you are finding it difficult to quit smoking. Your doctor can suggest you some product or programs which can help you quit smoking.