Myocardial Infarction

SYMPTOMS

The symptoms associated with heart attacks or myocardial infarctions are:

1. a mild discomfort in the chest

2. a crushing pain in the middle of the chest

3. sweaty, grey and clammy complexion

4. nausea

5. vomiting

6. a general feeling of not being well

7. dizziness

8. coughing and

9. a feeling as if one will die

The pain radiates to the wrist from the chest after being experienced in the neck, arms, ears and jaws. (From neck to the wrist, in that order)

The pain lasts for a few minutes or a few hours. But certain people may not experience any pain if he incurs a heart attack. This is common in people above the age of seventy five or has diabetes. This is termed the ‘silent’ heart attack.

CAUSES

The triggers for heart attacks or myocardial infarction are:

1. age factor – people above the age of fifty

2. obesity or being overweight

3. hypertension or high blood pressure

4. high level of cholesterol in blood

5. smoking

6. intake of diet

TREATMENT

1. A person must be administered CPR or Cardio-pulmonary resuscitation if the person who suffered from heart attack does not respond to any stimuli.

2. A person who had a heart attack is given a temporary improvement in heartbeat using the defibrillator.

3. A 300mg dose of aspirin is administered either as a chewable tablet or by dissolving it in water, to prevent the enlarging of clots in the coronary artery.

4. Thrombolytics are administered as injections to help in the dissolving of the clots in the coronary arteries. The most commonly used thrombolytics are streptokinase and alteplase.

5. The affected person is administered morphine to get relief from the pain associated with the myocardial infarction.

Once a person recovers from a myocardial infarction, he will be prescribed:

1. anti-platelets like aspirin in low doses that will help to decrease the stickiness of the platelets.

2. beta blockers like propranolol to help in the stabilisation of the electrical activity of the heart.

3. statins to lower the hypertension

In certain cases, one may have to undergo angioplasty or coronary bypass graft.