It is important to understand what happens during a heart attack and to be able to
quickly recognize the symptoms in order t to respond and act in a timely manner.
Time is of the essence in matters of the heart.
If blood supply to the heart muscle is cut off, a heart attack can result. Cells in the heart
muscle do not receive enough oxygen and begin to die. The more time that passes without treatment to restore blood flow, the greater the damage to the heart. Having
high blood pressure or high blood cholesterol, smoking, and having had a previous heart attack, stroke, or diabetes can increase the chance of having a heart attack.
According to the American Heart Association, about 700,000 Americans have an initial heart attack and
another 500,000 have a recurrent heart attack each
year. According to a CDC report, almost half of the cardiac deaths in 1999 occurred before emergency services
and hospital treatment could be administered.
It is important to recognize the signs of a heart attack
and to act immediately by calling 911. A person’s chances of surviving a heart attack
are increased if emergency treatment is given to the victim as soon as possible.
Symptoms of a Heart Attack
Men and women may experience slightly different symptoms of heart attack. Men are more likely to experience the classic symptoms mentioned above, while women’s symptoms may vary slightly and be somewhat vague. Some women may feel very
tired, sometimes for days or weeks before a heart attack occurs. Women may also
have heartburn, a cough, or heart flutters or lose their appetite. The main thing to remember is that if you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, don’t wait,
seek medical attention and/or call 911 immediately.