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HEART ATTACK ! HOW TO REACT

Updated on October 11, 2009

15 MINUTES COULD MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LIFE AND DEATH

 

When confronted with someone having a heart attack, do not panic. A heart attack is a condition when blood flow to the heart gets blocked because of clot formation in an artery. If the flow of blood is not restored quickly, then due to lack of oxygen and nutrients the heart muscle becomes irreversibly damaged. This can lead to death.

Heart attack is a state of medical emergency. The first hour is referred as ‘Golden Hour’ and treatment is most effective.

MOST COMMON SYMPTOMS ARE:

1       Heaviness OR  discomfort in the chest

2        Shortness of breath

3        Pain radiating to shoulders and/or jaw

4        Dizziness

5        Nausea

6        A low pulse

7        Sweating

8        Vomiting

It is often observed that symptoms can be vague and mild, but it is important to keep in mind that heart attack producing no symptoms or mild symptoms can be just as life-threatening as those with severe chest pain. You shouldn’t ignore the symptoms attributing them to indigestion, fatigue or stress as it delays in getting prompt medical attention.

YOUR FIRST STEPS

STEP 1 – Make the position lie down in comfortable position and give him an aspirin to chew. (It reduces mortality by 15 percent, but don’t take aspirin if you are allergic.)

STEP 2 – Right away call for an ambulance to take the patient to the hospital. (Keep emergency phone numbers in your vicinity)

STEP 3 – If the onset is sudden, with a full blown cardio-pulmonary arrest (where the heart stops beating), do a Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), even if you are untrained. Imperfect CPR is far better than no CPR at all.

CPR STEPS

·        Place the patient on his back.

·        Put heel of your hand midway on the patient’s chest.

·        Push down so that the chest is pressed inward one-and-a-half inches.

·        Perform hundred pumps per minute (almost two per seconds) until help arrives.

 

STEP 4 – As soon as the patient reaches the hospital, get an electro cardiogram (ECG) done.

STEP 5 – After conforming the diagnosis the patient is given injectable medicines (thrombolytics or clot-busters) to dissolve any dangerous clots (these can also be given in the ambulance on the way to the hospital). Early recognition helps; every 15 minutes wasted leads to a 30% increase in mortality rate. If the delay is beyond four hours, clot-busters drugs do not work.  

 MOST COMMON SYMPTOMS ARE:

1       Heaviness OR  discomfort in the chest

2        Shortness of breath

3        Pain radiating to shoulders and/or jaw

4        Dizziness

5        Nausea

6        A low pulse

7        Sweating

8        Vomiting

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    • Moon Daisy profile image

      Moon Daisy 8 years ago from London

      Very useful. I was just thinking that too about keeping some aspirin handy. That's a helpful tip... Thanks!

    • marcofratelli profile image

      marcofratelli 8 years ago from Australia

      Great tips. It might pay to keep aspirin nearby.

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 8 years ago from South Africa

      Very useful Hub - thanks for the research.

      Love and peace

      Tony