Heart & Circulatory Health

Heart Attack and Its Early Recognition

Written by
Dr. Mir Osman Ali
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.

Published on May 27, 2016 and last reviewed on Sep 05, 2019   -  1 min read

Abstract

Abstract

Recognizing the early signs of a heart attack is crucial, as it helps prevent further heart damage. Learn about the life-saving steps you can take at home.

Heart Attack and Its Early Recognition

Heart is the vital pumping organ of the body. Its damage can be catastrophic, but the good news is that there are preventive measures.

Heart attack is irreversible death of heart tissue, which occurs when the oxygen supply to a specific part of the heart cuts off due to decreased blood supply or partial block in the blood supply to the heart.

Signs of Heart Attack

  • Severe left sided chest pain can spread to the left arm, neck and back. The pain can last for 30-60 minutes. The pain can be described as a sharp stabbing pain, squeezing or burning pain.
  • Severe anxiety and sweating is commonly seen.
  • The patient can feel the fast heart beating also known as palpitations. Breathlessness may also be seen.
  • Cough, abnormal breathing sounds or frothy sputum sometimes may be associated.

Life Saving Step

You can take immediate life saving steps at home before being transferred to hospital. Take an Aspirin tablet 75 mg to 200 mg maximum immediately. This helps in decreasing chest pain and also helps in improving the blood supply to the damaged region. Reach the Emergency Department of the Hospital as soon as possible. Reaching within 2 hours is considered to give better outcome of the disease.

Never make the patient to walk or stand during a heart attack. No physical stress should be allowed and patients should be reassured in order to decrease anxiety.

Investigation

Electrocardiogram (ECG) is the first and routine investigation of this condition.

Medical Therapy

It is decided on the type of myocardial infarction. MI is of two types, ST segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) and non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction (non-STEMI or NSTEMI).

STEMI needs immediate thrombolytic therapy that dissolves the clots and the NSTEMI attack treatment is totally different from the one expressed above. Your cardiologist will take the best action for you.

If you are still in doubt regarding heart attack, then consult a cardiologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Last reviewed at:
05 Sep 2019  -  1 min read

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Related Questions & Answers


Is heart attack genetic?

Query: Hi doctor, I am a 30 year old female. My father who is 65 years old has suffered from two very severe heart attacks, one recently and another two years back. His father and brother both died in their 50s from heart attacks. Is heart attack genetic? Should my son and I get tested?  Read Full >>


Answer: Hello, Welcome to icliniq.com. Yes, heart attack has a genetic component coupled with environmental elements like lifestyle, etc. Your chance of acquiring it depends on both of your parents. Likewise, your son acquiring it depends on you and your husband. But you are at an increased risk, so you...  Read Full

Severe heart palpitations in a 20-year-old man. What can be done?

Query: Hello doctor, I am a 20-year-old healthy young man. I do not drink or smoke but I do work a lot. I work for 60 hours actually and just moved out of my house with my family. I got my own new place as well as trying to maintain a relationship with my current girlfriend. I do not really have any health...  Read Full >>


Answer: Hello, Welcome to icliniq.com. I have gone through your reports (attachment removed to protect patient identity). All the tests are fine. The cardiologist said your heart is normal. So, you do not have to worry. Tablet Metoprolol has been given for symptomatic relief for your palpitation. Probab...  Read Full

Why is Aspirin given for high hemoglobin and RBC count?

Query: Hi doctor, I am a 40 year old male. My hemoglobin was 18.3 g/dL, but it has come down to 17.7 g/dL since the last two months. My RBC count varies between 6.1 to 6.27 now, and PCV is 51.9 %. I am taking mini Aspirin as suggested by my doctor. Do I have any reason to worry?  Read Full >>


Dr. Parth R Goswami
Family Physician, General Practitioner, Hematologist, Pathologist

Answer: Hi, Welcome to icliniq.com. Your hemoglobin level, RBC (red blood cells), and PCV (packed cell volume) are high. The lymph node, liver, and spleen need to be clinically examined. Do you have a history of dizziness, weakness, and stroke? High level of RBC and hemoglobin can cause blood clots and ca...  Read Full

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