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1. Know Heart Attack Symptoms

  • Chest discomfort that may last more than a few minutes or go away and come back. It may feel like squeezing, fullness, pressure, or pain.
  • Pain or discomfort in the upper body, including arm, left shoulder, back, neck, jaw, or below the breastbone.
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath (with or without chest pain).
  • Sweating or “cold sweat.”
  • Indigestion, heartburn, nausea, or vomiting.
  • Light-headedness, dizziness, or extreme weakness.
  • Anxiety or rapid or irregular heartbeats.
  • Do not drive to the hospital unless you have no other option. Ambulance personnel can start care as soon as they arrive.
  • If there is no history of aspirin allergy or bleeding, emergency response may ask the person to chew one 325 mg aspirin slowly.
  • At the hospital, an emergency department doctor will examine the person and run tests to see if chest pain stems from a heart attack or another cause. Tests may include an electrocardiogram (ECG), chest X-ray, and blood tests.
  • Inform the person’s doctor about the chest pain and ER visit.

2. Wait for Emergency Help to Arrive

  • Do not drive to the hospital unless you have no other option. Ambulance personnel can start care as soon as they arrive.
  • If there is no history of aspirin allergy or bleeding, emergency response may ask the person to chew one 325 mg aspirin slowly.

3. Follow Up

  • At the hospital, an emergency department doctor will examine the person and run tests to see if chest pain stems from a heart attack or another cause. Tests may include an electrocardiogram (ECG), chest X-ray, and blood tests.
  • Inform the person’s doctor about the chest pain and ER visit.
  • A heart attack is a medical emergency. Call on 8008 777 555 number if you think you or someone else is having a heart attack.
    The average person waits 3 hours before seeking help for symptoms of a heart attack. Many heart attack patients die before they reach a hospital. The sooner the person gets to the emergency room, the better the chance of survival. Prompt medical treatment reduces the amount of heart damage.
    This article discusses what to do if you think someone may be having a heart attack.

    Causes

    A heart attack occurs when the blood flow that carries oxygen to the heart is blocked. The heart muscle becomes starved for oxygen and begins to die.

    Symptoms

    Symptoms of a heart attack can vary from person to person. They may be mild or severe. Women, the elderly, and people with diabetes are more likely to have subtle or unusual symptoms.

    Symptoms in adults may include:

    • Changes in mental status, particularly in the elderly
    • Chest pain that feels like pressure, squeezing, or fullness
      • The pain is usually in the center of the chest
      • It may also be felt in the jaw, shoulder, arms, back, and stomach
      • It last for more than a few minutes, or it may come and go
    • Cold sweat
    • Light-headedness
    • Nausea (more common in women)
    • Numbness, aching, or tingling in the arm (usually the left arm)
    • Shortness of breath
    • Weakness or fatigue, particularly in the elderly

    First Aid

    If you think someone is having a heart attack:

    • Have the person sit down, rest, and try to keep calm.
    • Loosen any tight clothing.
    • Ask if the person takes any chest pain medication for a known heart condition, such as nitroglycerin, and help them take it.
    • If the pain does not go away promptly with rest or within 3 minutes of taking nitroglycerin, call for emergency medical help.
    • If the person is unconscious and unresponsive, call 8008 777 555 (emergency number), then begin CPR.
    • If an infant or child is unconscious and unresponsive, perform 1 minute of CPR, then call 8008 777 555.

    DO NOT

    • Do NOT leave the person alone except to call for help, if necessary.
    • Do NOT allow the person to deny the symptoms and convince you not to call for emergency help.
    • Do NOT wait to see if the symptoms go away.
    • Do NOT give the person anything by mouth unless a heart medication (such as nitroglycerin) has been prescribed.

    When to Contact a Medical Professional

    Call 8008 102 102 number immediately if the person:

    • Does not respond to you
    • Is not breathing
    • Has sudden chest pain or other symptoms of a heart attack

    Prevention

    Adults should take steps to control heart disease risk factors whenever possible.

    • If you smoke, quit. Smoking more than doubles the chance of developing heart disease.
    • Keep blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes in good control and follow your doctor’s orders.
    • Lose weight if obese or overweight.
    • Get regular exercise to improve heart health. (Talk to your doctor before starting any new fitness program.)
    • Eat a heart-healthy diet. Limit saturated fats, red meat, and sugars. Increase your intake of chicken, fish, fresh fruits and vegetables, and whole grains. Your health care provider can help you tailor a diet specific to your needs.
    • Limit the amount of alcohol you drink. One drink a day is associated with reducing the rate of heart attacks, but two or more drinks a day can damage the heart and cause other medical problems.