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Heart Attack - Know The Symptoms And Diagnosis

Written and reviewed by
Cardiologist, Navi Mumbai
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I am Dr. Pritish Bagul, Cardiologist. Today I will talk about a heart attack. A heart attack is a condition in which the blood supply to the heart is stopped. The heart is a muscle and it is supplied by 3 different arteries. So, when they supply to these muscles is completely closed down. The muscle suffers from damage. It doesn't get its oxygen requirement and this condition is called a heart attack. It is a life-threatening condition. There are different types of a heart attack. What are the symptoms of a heart attack? The first symptom is chest pain in the majority of cases which is localized to the center of the chest and it can radiate to the left or right arm, towards the jawline. These symptoms are associated with sweating. 30% of the patients can get a heart attack without even chest pain and this is called a silent heart attack which we see commonly in diabetics or especially in females. Some patients can get shortness of breath. So, these are the symptoms of a heart attack. Some patients come with the unusual feeling of acidity. If you are feeling that it is not even stopping with the routine medicines, it could be a heart attack.

So, you have to be cautious and timely contact to your nearby Dr. How do we diagnose heart attack? First is the symptom. We do an investigation like ECG. Through this, we will come to know that which kind of heart attack is that. 2nd investigation can be done with an echocardiogram. We can see that how the heart is pumping it can be estimated. Next, in an emergency, we can do an angiography. We go towards the heart from hand or leg artery and we inject a die in coronary arteries to see through the camera. We see whether the artery is patent or not. in case, the artery is closed, we open the artery in an emergency and that is called angioplasty. So, angiography with angioplasty i.e. a primary angioplasty is the treatment of heart attack. In case, angioplasty is not available, the other option is thrombolysis in which we give blood-thinning medicine which dissolves the clot.

The blood flow is restored and the chest pain is down. So, these are the 2 main modalities of the treatment for the patient in a heart attack. We give medicines to control cholesterol, control sufar, critical care management is required in initial 4-5 days. Blood-thinning medicines are continued. So, this is about the disease and the treatment. How to prevent this problem? First and foremost thing is that you should screen yourself to check if you are at the high risk of developing a heart attack. If there father or mother has suffered from a heart attack then they should be more cautious. They should be aware of their risk profile. Those who have cholesterol abnormality should be more aware. So, getting yourself screened, is one of the most important things. Inculcate healthy eating habits like healthy diet which is less in fats. Include more vegetables, fruits. Junk foods are to be avoided. Control of your diabetes is important. Regular exercise is very important. Everyone should do for at least 45 mins of aerobic exercises. Avoid smoking, alcohol and any other addictions. In case, you are at risk, consult the nearest cardiologist. The patient who are diabetics, we advise them to be on single anti-platelet, cholesterol-lowering medicines. This is all about the term, treatment, and majors to prevent heart attack. In case of any query, you can consult me through Lybrate.

Thank You.

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