Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Does Shoulder Pain Mean Heart Attack

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What Is Shoulder Pain

Can Left Shoulder Pain Be A Sign Of A Heart Attack?

Shoulder pain is usually felt in the front of the shoulder, or at the top of the arm. Often, the pain is only felt when you move your arm in a certain way.

The pain may be deep and sharp, or there may be numbness, tingling or pins and needles. It may radiate down into the arm or up into the head, or there may be pain between the shoulder blades. Sometimes the pain may be caused by problems in the neck or spine, rather than the shoulder.

Medications To Break Up The Clot

Q: Are there any medications to break up clots?

A: Yes there is a clot-busting medicine they use on patients who had a stroke that they can use on patients having heart attacks. It’s called TPA, and that medicine is a really potent blood thinner that will dissolve any clots in your body and can cause you to have unwanted bleeding. It’s used now in the modern era in places where either there isnt the resources or staff to do a stenting procedure or if there are some other major reasons against having the stent procedure. The main downside though about the clot-buster medicine is that there’s about a 3% chance the patient could have a fatal, catastrophic brain bleed and die. So its a real big risk-benefit tradeoff. There’s no way to predict who might bleed but at the end of the day. If the doctor ends up having to use it, we’ll see what happens and hope for the best. Most of the times there’s no problem, but there’s a small chance things dont go well and cost you your life.

Why Does Angina Occur

Angina may be caused by any condition that affects the blood flow to your heart, such as:

  • Coronary artery disease The walls of the arteries that carry blood to the heart develop a plaque buildup. This restricts the flow of blood and less oxygen reaches the heart. This is by far the most common cause of angina.
  • Coronary artery spasm A coronary artery narrows causing blood to slow or stop flowing through the artery. When the spasm stops, the artery and blood flow return to normal.
  • Abnormal heart valves
  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • Anemia The level of red blood cells or hemoglobin are too low.
  • Polycythemia The blood has too many red blood cells, which causes the blood to get thick.
  • A thyroid problem

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Can You Recognize A Heart Attack Or Stroke

What To Do When Every Moment Counts

How would you react to a medical emergency? When it comes to life-threatening conditions like heart attack or stroke, every minute counts. Get to know the signs and symptoms of these health threats. If you think you or someone else might be having a heart attack or stroke, get medical help right away. Acting fast could save your life or someone elses.

Heart disease and stroke are 2 of the top killers among both women and men in the U.S. Nationwide, someone dies from a heart attack about every 90 seconds, and stroke kills someone about every 4 minutes, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Quick medical help could prevent many of these deaths. Fast action can also limit permanent damage to the body.

Heart attack and stroke are caused by interruptions to the normal flow of blood to the heart or brain2 organs that are essential to life. Without access to oxygen-rich blood and nutrients, heart or brain cells begin to malfunction and die. This cell death can set off a series of harmful effects throughout the body. The changes ultimately lead to the familiar symptoms of a heart or brain emergency.

You might know the most common symptoms of heart attack: sustained, crushing chest pain and difficulty breathing. A heart attack might also cause cold sweats, a racing heart, pain down the left arm, jaw stiffness, or shoulder pain.

Real Stories About Experiencing Heart Attack

Chest Pain

“I never connect nausea, shoulder pain, heart attack together. However, one day I was cutting the grass one afternoon and walked to the house to drink water and had a sit. Then I felt nauseated and sudden pain that spread to my arm, which then curled up and could not uncurl. I had my grandson call 911 and was flown directly to a cardiac hospital after the ambulance crew said I was in full ST elevation myocardial infraction. I coded 4 times, but I recovered and was released the next day.”

“I am 58 and 3 weeks ago I had a heart attack. For a month I had symptoms like pain in my jaw, shoulder, face, arm, back and a burning in my chest. All these I felt on the left side of my body. The pain would always ease up, but one night I woke up and the pain did not go away. I took aspirin and I started throwing up, i was rushed to ER where they told me I was having a heart attack. I got treated and I now am home.”

“My mother complained about shoulder pain. Not much attention was paid and her joints ached as well but she thought it was flu. The day she experience chest pain was the day she passed out because of a major heart attack.”

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Age Smoking And High Cholersterol

Q: What are some major factors that could increase the risk of heart problems?

A: For cardiac risk, the top factors are age, history of smoking, and history of high cholesterol. Age increases our risk of having heart issues the most because as we age, we’re more at risk to develop blockages in the arteries of the heart. Second is having a history of smoking and high cholesterol. People that have smoked for a really long time or have high cholesterol are at a much higher risk for developing serious heart conditions. Also, people with lots of relatives who’ve had heart attacks, especially at a young age, are also at higher cardiac risk.

Other risk factors include people who are obese or have what we call metabolic syndrome, which is a constellation of having a sedentary lifestyle, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol. After those big buckets, there are some more nuanced smaller, niche risk factors like people who’ve had a history of radiation to their chest for cancer or people who have been on certain medications that could have increased their cardiovascular risk. I would say age, obesity, hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, and a strong family history are the really big ones.

What About Surgery For Angina

Like angioplasty, surgery is an option for people whose angina does not improve with medications and others who are at high risk of having a heart attack. Surgery is usually reserved for people with very severe narrowing or blockage in several coronary arteries.

In almost all cases, the operation used for severely narrowed coronary arteries is coronary artery bypass grafting.

Coronary artery bypass surgery

  • The chest and rib cage are opened up
  • The narrowed part of the artery is bypassed by a piece of vein removed from the leg, or with a piece of artery behind the sternum , or a portion of the radial artery taken from the lower arm or forearm.
  • Several arteries can be bypassed in one operation.
  • This is a very safe operation, with a mortality rate of less than 1%, in people whose heart muscle is not severely damaged irreversibly and who have normal lungs, kidneys, liver, and other organs.
  • Because the chest is opened, the recovery time can be quite long, especially if the person is older and has multiple other health problems.

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Definition Of A Heart Attack

Q: What is a heart attack?

A: A heart attack is when one of the blood vessels that typically feeds blood and oxygen to the heart muscle itself becomes blocked. Thats the colloquial meaning of a heart attack. In medicine, we call it a myocardial infarction. It usually happens in the context of a patient or person who already has small pre-existing blockages scattered throughout the arteries that feed your heart called the coronary arteries.

Heartburn Or Frequent Belching

Shoulder pain or a heart attack?

Occasional heartburn after a few cups of coffee or a couple of slices for pizza is perfectly reasonable. However, if you start experiencing heartburn and it’s never bothered you before, it might be a good idea to contact your doctor. The pain you’re experiencing could be angina, a pain akin to heartburn that is caused by a lack of blood flow to the heart.

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Bone Muscle Or Nerve Problems

Sometimes chest pain may result from overuse or an injury to the chest area from a fall or accident. Viruses can also cause pain in the chest area. Other causes of chest pain include:

Rib problems. Pain from a broken rib may worsen with deep breathing or coughing. It is often confined to one area and may feel sore when you press on it. The area where the ribs join the breastbone may also become inflamed.

Muscle strain. Even really hard coughing can injure or inflame the muscles and tendons between the ribs and cause chest pain. The pain tends to persist and it worsens with activity.

Shingles. Caused by the varicella zoster virus, shingles may prompt a sharp, band-like pain before a telltale rash appears several days later.

Chest Pain Pressure Squeezing And Fullness

Picture someone having a heart attack, and chances are you imagine them gasping for air and clutching their chest before falling unconscious. While you may experience chest pain during a heart attack, it may not be as dramatic. In some cases, it may not even be described as pain. Instead, it may feel more like pressure or squeezing in the chest.

Chest pain or chest discomfort is caused by an insufficient supply of oxygen-rich blood to your heart. During a heart attack, you may feel this pain in the center of the chest. It can last for a few minutes and disappear, or it may recur after a short break.

This symptom is a warning sign of blocked or narrowed arteries. Dont hesitate to report this to your doctor, even if this and other symptoms are not intense.

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Main Therapy For Heart Attack

Q: What is currently the main therapy for heart attacks?

A: The main therapy right now is to give a whole cocktail of medicines that will thin your blood, prevent further clots from forming and lowering your heart rate. Usually, just those medical things could be enough to make your chest pain go away and make your heart muscle not die. But, we know that if the demand on the heart were to increase, like in the case if you were going for a walk which makes your heart rate increase, your heart muscle will start dying again. What we usually do is a cardiac catheterization, a procedure in which doctors thread a wire through the groin or wrist and follow the arteries all the way back to the heart and to the coronary arteries and, while looking at the coronary arteries from an x-ray, shoot some dye to identify the area of blockage. Then, blow up a balloon attached to the wire to smush all that plaque and blockage against the artery wall, and then put in a stent . Once that stent is in, you have a much lower chance of having a recurrent blockage in that area or causing more heart tissue to die.

Discomfort That Lessens With Exercise

Quiz: What Does Your Chest Pain Mean?

If a sharp pain strikes your chest but improves as you move around a bit well, you may be looking at a case of heartburn or some other gastrointestinal issue.

An estimated 15 million Americans a day experience heartburn, which brings an uncomfortable burning feeling in your chest and a sour feeling in your throat. An over-the-counter antacid can help bring some relief.

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First Thoughts When A Patient Comes With Tightness In Chest

Q: Say a patient comes in with tightness in chest, what would be on your mind?

A: Chest tightness or pain can be caused by a really broad number of things . There are a few really key characteristics that could help categorize someone’s chest pain as something acute that require you to mobilize a ton of resources right away versus other things that are not life threatening even if they may be causing the patient’s chest pain and discomfort.

What To Do When Heart Attack Happens

  • If you or someone near you experiences heart attack symptoms like shoulder pain, heart attack may be suspected and 911 should be called within the first 5 minutes. Ensure you seek treatment immediately, most people die because they doubt the symptoms could be heat attack related.
  • You might be tempted to drive the patient to the emergency room yourself, but it is better if you wait for the ambulance. The crew will know how to keep the patient alive. However, if you are having a heart attack, do not drive yourself unless you do not have any other choice.
  • Before the ambulance arrives, try keeping the patient calm by sitting him down or helping him lie down. Secondly, if the person is not allergic to aspirin make them chew and swallow a baby aspirin. The effects are felt faster when it is chewed than when swallowed whole. If you notice the person has stopped breathing, a person qualified to perform CPR should perform the procedure on him, or you can do it. If you have no idea how to administer a CPR, the 911 operator can guide you through it.

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Symptoms Of A Heart Attack

Symptoms of a heart attack can include:

  • chest pain a sensation of pressure, tightness or squeezing in the centre of your chest
  • pain in other parts of the body it can feel as if the pain is travelling from your chest to your arms , jaw, neck, back and tummy
  • feeling lightheaded or dizzy
  • feeling sick or being sick
  • an overwhelming sense of anxiety
  • coughing or wheezing

Although the chest pain is often severe, some people may only experience minor pain, similar to indigestion. In some cases, there may not be any chest pain at all, especially in women, older people, and people who have diabetes.

It’s the overall pattern of symptoms that helps to determine whether you are having a heart attack.

What Makes You Worry That Chest Pain Is Serious Like A Heart Attack

How Does Arm Pain Feel In A Heart Attack?

When is chest pain serious? That dull burning feeling in your chest doesn’t seem to be going away, and even feels like it is getting worse. Is it a heart attack, or ?

It’s a vexing question, one that millions of people and their doctors face each year. What’s the problem? Chest pain can stem from dozens of conditions besides , from pancreatitis to pneumonia or panic attack.

Millions of Americans with chest pain are seen in hospital emergency departments every year. Only 20% of them are diagnosed with a heart attack or an episode of unstable , a warning sign that a heart attack may happen soon. A few have another potentially life-threatening problem, such as pulmonary embolism or aortic dissection . Some are experiencing “regular” angina, which occurs when part of the heart isn’t getting as much oxygen-rich blood as it needs during periods of physical exertion or emotional stress. Most of them, though, had a condition unrelated to the heart or arteries.

The other tricky problem with heart attacks is that different people experience them in different ways. Some have classic chest pain. Others have jaw pain or back pain. Still others become breathless, or extremely fatigued, or nauseated.

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How Can I Take Care Of Myself And Prevent Angina

Follow the treatment prescribed by your doctor. In addition, follow these guidelines:

  • Control your physical activity: Learn what types of activity cause you to have angina and avoid these activities. Avoid sudden hard physical activity. Learn to pace yourself physically.
  • Moderate exercise is beneficial to many people living with angina. Consult your doctor about beginning an exercise program.
  • Avoid situations that are stressful. Learn the types of situations that upset you. Many people can learn to control their emotions better once they are aware of situations that trigger emotional upset. In particular, you should try to avoid situations that cause you to feel pressured, such as deadlines and an overcrowded schedule. Excitement and anger can also trigger angina.
  • Eat a healthy diet. If you are overweight, begin a weight-loss program under the supervision of your doctor or a dietitian. Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet and avoid foods high in cholesterol and fat . Heavy meals and/or eating too fast can put a strain on your heart. Try to avoid eating large meals and rich foods that make you feel stuffed.
  • Dont smoke: Cigarette smoking often makes angina worse and it increases your risk for heart attack and other circulatory problems.
  • Have your blood pressure checked regularly. High blood pressure increases the hearts work and can aggravate angina.

Whatto Do If You Notice Symptoms

Women often say theynoticed some of these three warning signs weeks or a monthbefore a heart attack.

The sooner you report aproblem, the better the chances are of catching an issue before it becomes afull-blown heart attack. If you experience any of these symptoms, take note andvisit your doctor as quickly as possible.

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