What happens right before a heart attack?
A heart attack occurs when the blood flow to the heart is blocked due to plaque formation mainly from cholesterol and other substance. Eventually, the plaque ruptures and forms a clot which obstructs the coronary artery.
Some heart attack is sudden and intense to end leading to sudden cardiac death in a few minutes. But most heart attacks start slowly and give some prodromal signs which include:
- Chest discomfort or pain in the centre of the chest which lasts more than a few minutes. Sometimes it comes and goes as pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
- Lightheadedness, nausea, vomiting or stomach pain.
- Jaw, neck or back pain.
- Discomfort or pain in the shoulder or arm.
- Shortness of breath with or without chest pain.
- Other possible signs are cold sweating and apprehension.
The symptoms are different in women from men. Women experience shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, back pain or jaw pain.If you get some of these warning signs please do not hesitate to call an emergency or let somebody drive you to the nearest hospital because time is muscle in cardiology.
Know more about ischemic heart disease
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