Treatments for Heart attack


Treatment list for Heart attack: The list of treatments mentioned in various sources for Heart attack includes the following list. Always seek professional medical advice about any treatment or change in treatment plans.

  • Call emergency immediately - 911 in the USA.
  • Go to a hospital immediately - if you cannot call emergency.
  • Emergency treatment
  • Hospitalization
  • Coronary angioplasty (balloon angioplasty)
  • Coronary artery bypass
  • Immediate self-help for heart attacks
    • Call for emergency medical help - usually 911 in the USA
    • Nitroglycerin pills - it may be possible to take your prescribed nitroglycerin pills for heart attack symptoms, according to your doctorís orders. Call emergency immediately if the symptoms are occurring for the first time, severe, or unusual in any way. If symptoms stop quickly (less than 15 minutes), call your doctor for advice anyway. If symptoms continue, call emergency.
    • Aspirin - Taking aspirin may be helpful. Can be taken in addition to nitroglycerin pills. Can also be taken even if you are not on nitroglycerin pills. Call emergency immediately if the symptoms are occurring for the first time, severe, or unusual in any way. If symptoms stop quickly (less than 15 minutes), call your doctor anyway; if not, call emergency.

Treatment of Heart attack: medical news summaries: The following medical news items are relevant to treatment of Heart attack:

Treatments of Heart attack discussion: Getting to the hospital fast allows use of thrombolytic1

Clot-busting drugs and other artery-opening treatments work best when given within the first hour after a heart attack starts. The first hour also is the most risky time during a heart attackĖitís when your heart might stop suddenly. Responding fast to your symptoms really increases your chance of surviving.2

Given that these new therapies are available, itís very sad to know that so many people cannot receive these treatments because they delay too long before seeking care. The greatest benefits of these therapies are gained when patients come in early (preferably within the first hour of the start of their symptoms).2

Emergency medical personnelóalso called EMS, for emergency medical servicesóbring medical care to you. For example, they bring oxygen and medications. And they can actually restart someoneís heart if it stops after they arrive. Your wife/husband/friend/coworker canít do that, or help you at all if they are driving. In the ambulance, there are enough people to give you the help you need and get you to the hospital right away.2

I carry nitroglycerin pills all the time for my heart condition. If I have heart attack symptoms, shouldnít I try them first?

Yes, if your doctor has prescribed nitroglycerin pills, you should follow your doctorís orders. If you are not sure about how to take your nitroglycerin when you get chest pain, check with your doctor.2

You should not delay calling 9-1-1 to take an aspirin. Studies have shown that people sometimes delay seeking help if they take an aspirin (or other medicine). Emergency department personnel will give people experiencing a heart attack an aspirin as soon as they arrive. So, the best thing to do is to call 9-1-1 immediately and let the professionals give the aspirin.2

Call or have someone else call 911. Don't delay. New medical treatments can stop heart attacks in its track. Don't wait because you think it will be embarrassing if it turns out not to be a heart attack! Treatments are most effective if given within one hour of when the attack begins. However, only 1 in 5 patients get to the hospital emergency department within one hour of when their heart attack symptoms begin. 3

The longer you wait to get medical treatment, the greater the likelihood that you will have severe, permanent damage to your heart or even die. The earlier the treatment, the more likely it is that damage to your heart will be kept to a minimum. 3

Once it is clear that a person is having a heart attack, immediate treatment usually includes drugs to help open the blocked artery, get blood flowing well to the heart muscle, and keep the blood from clotting again. Other treatment depends on the severity of the condition and the amount of damage the heart may have sustained, but may involve drugs, surgery, and other procedures. Cardiac rehabilitation programs are offered in most communities to help people recover from a heart attack and reduce the chances of having another attack. 3

Exercise is good for your heart muscle and overall health. It can help you lose weight, keep your cholesterol and blood pressure under control, reduce stress, and lift your mood. If you participate in a cardiac rehabilitation program, you will learn how to exercise safely and regularly to strengthen your heart and body. When exercising, you will need to watch out for signs of problems such as chest pain, shortness of breath, feeling dizzy or weak, irregular heartbeats, or cold sweats. If you develop these symptoms, stop exercising and call 911 for help right away. 3

1. excerpt from Facts About Heart Disease and Women: NHLBI
2. excerpt from Frequently Asked Questions About Heart Attack: NHLBI
3. excerpt from Heart Attack: NWHIC

Last revision: April 9, 2003

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