Heart Attack : Symptom, Causes, Prevention, Treatment & Surgery

Heart Attack: A heart attack (additionally known as myocardial infarction or MI) is the damage and death of heart muscle from the sudden blockage of the coronary artery by a blood clot. Coronary arteries supply blood to the heart muscle and oxygen. Blockage of the coronary artery deprives the heart muscle of blood and oxygen, causing injury to the heart muscle. Injury to the heart muscle causes chest pain and chest pressure sensation. If blood flow is not recuperated to the heart muscle within 20 to 40 minutes, irreversible death of the heart muscle will commence occurring. Muscle continues to die for six to eight hours at which time the heart attack customarily is “complete.” The dead heart muscle replaced by scar tissue.Heart Attack Warning sign Treatment with a clot-busting medicine or an emergency procedure to restore blood flow in the blocked blood vessel are conventionally done as anon as possible. This prevents or minimizes any damage to the heart muscle. Other treatments avail to facilitate ease pain and to avert(prevent) complications. Reducing risk factors can avail to prevent a heart attack.

Causes of a heart attack

The blood clot (thrombosis) -Common cause of a heart attack is blood clot inside a coronary artery or of its branches.

Treatment with clot-busting medication or a procedure known as angioplasty can break clot and regain blood flow through the artery. If treatment is given quick enough, that prevent damage to the heart muscle or limits the extent of the damage.

Uncommon causes:

Inflammation of the coronary arteries is rare.
The stab wound to the heart.
A blood clot composing elsewhere in the body and traveling to a coronary artery where it gets stuck.
Taking cocaine can cause a coronary artery to go into spasm.
Complications from heart surgery.

Risk factor of a heart attack(Prevention)

heart attack causesHigh blood pressure- If Blood pressure is high it can be treated.
Cholesterol- This should customarily be treated if it is high.
Overweight- Losing weight will reduce the amount of workload on the heart that helps lower your blood pressure.
Diet-You should aim to the healthy diet.
Inactivity- You should aim to do some moderate physical activity on most days of the week for at least 30 minutes.
Diabetes- People with diabetes are at the higher risk. This jeopardy can be reduced by ensuring blood pressure, cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels are well controlled.
Family history- Your peril is incremented if there is a family history of heart disease.
Smoking- If smoke, you should make every effort to stop.
Ethnic group- Certain ethnic groups such as British Asians have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.

Symptoms of a heart attack

The most prevalent symptom is severe chest pain, that often feels like a heavy pressure feeling on the chest. The pain may additionally peregrinate up into your jaw and down the left arm or down both arms. You additionally sweat, feel sick and feel faint. You may additionally feel short of breath. The pain may similar to angina, but it is customarily more rigorous and lasts longer. (Angina conventionally goes off after a few minutes. Heart attack pain customarily lasts more than 15 minutes - sometimes several hours.)
Other symptoms of a heart attack can include:
Nausea and vomiting
Lightheadedness, dizziness
Palpitations (feeling like your heart is beating too fast or irregularly)
Sweating, which may be very heavy
Shortness of breath
However, some people have only mild discomfort in their chest. The pain can sometimes feel like heartburn.
Infrequently, a heart attack happens without causing any pain. This is conventionally diagnosed when you have a heart tracing (electrocardiograph, or ECG) at a later stage.

How heart attack diagnosed and assessed?

heart attack treatmentA heart tracing (electrocardiograph, or ECG)- There are typical changes to the common pattern of the ECG in the heart attack.
Blood tests- A blood test which measures a chemical called troponin is the customary test that confirms the heart attack. This chemical is present in the heart muscle cells. Damage to the heart muscle cells releases troponin into the bloodstream. In the case of heart attacks the blood level of troponin increases within 3-12 hours from onset of chest pain, peaks at 24-48 hours and returns normal level over 5-14 days.

Troponin Normal Level:

<0.01 ng/mL

Values > or =0.01 ng/mL have been shown to have prognostic value.


Treatment of a heart attack


bypass surgeryYou may hook up to a heart monitor, so the health care team can see how your heart is beating.
You will receive oxygen, so that heart doesn't have to work as hard.
An intravenous line may be placed into one of your veins. Medication and fluids pass through this IV.
You may get nitroglycerin and morphine to avail reduce chest pain.
You also may receive aspirin unless it would not be safe for you. In that case, you will be given another medication that averts(prevents) blood clots.
Hazardous abnormal heartbeats (arrhythmias) may be treated with medication or electric shocks.


Angioplasty a procedure to open narrowed or blocked blood vessels that supply blood to the heart.

Angioplasty is sometimes the first choice of treatment. It should do within 90 minutes after admitted in the hospital, and customarily no later than 12 hours after a heart attack.
A stent is a diminutive(small), metal mesh tube that opens up (expands) inside the coronary artery. A stent is customarily placed after or during angioplasty. It avails prevent the artery from closing up again.
You may be given drugs to break up the clot. This is called thrombolytic therapy. It is best if these drugs are given anon after the onset of symptoms, customarily no later than 12 hours after it and ideally within 30 minutes of arriving at the hospital.

Some people may additionally have heart bypass surgery to open narrowed or blocked blood vessels that supply blood to the heart. This procedure is additionally called coronary artery bypass grafting or open heart surgery.

Outlook (Prognosis) of a heart attack

After a heart attack, have a higher chance of having another attack.

How well after a heart attack depends on several factors such as:

The amount of damage to heart muscle and heart valves
Where damage is located
Medical care after the heart attack
If the heart can no longer pump blood out to the body as well as it used to, may develop heart failure. Abnormal heart rhythms can occur, and that can be life-threatening.

Most people can gradually go back to the normal activities after a heart attack. Verbalize with your medical provider about how much activity is good for you.