Heart attack? Know the facts and the symptoms
Every 40 seconds, someone in the United States has a heart attack. Every year 805,000 Americans have a heart attack.
A heart attack happens when a part of the heart muscle doesn’t get enough blood. A buildup of fat, cholesterol and other substances form a plaque in the arteries that feed the heart (coronary arteries) thus causing the blockage.
The plaque eventually breaks away and forms a clot. The interrupted blood flow can damage or destroy part of the heart muscle.
The more time that passes without treatment to restore blood flow, the greater the damage to the heart muscle, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Know the signs
Five major symptoms of a heart attack are:
- Chest pain or discomfort that may feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
- Feeling weak, light-headed or faint.
- Pain or discomfort in the jaw, neck or back.
- Pain or discomfort in one or both arms or shoulders.
- Shortness of breath.
Make the call
If you or someone else has these symptoms, call 9-1-1 immediately. Every second counts. The sooner the person with these symptoms can get to an emergency room, the sooner they can receive treatment to reduce the amount of damage to the heart muscle.
Healthy habits and prevention
The Cucamonga Valley Medical Group encourages you to consult with your physician or provider regarding heart disease and any other health care matters.
Choosing healthy habits can help prevent heart disease. Introduce healthy foods and drinks into your diet. Maintain a healthy weight. Stay physically active. Don’t smoke.
Have a (healthy) heart!
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