Call 911 for Sudden Chest PainIf you have any sudden or unexplained chest pain, call 911 immediately.
What is a Heart Attack?
Every year, more than one million Americans have a heart attack. Over 25% of those are fatal. When the blood supply to your heart suddenly becomes blocked, a heart attack occurs. If the blood supply isn’t restored quickly, part of the heart muscle will die due to lack of oxygen.
Symptoms of a Heart Attack
Symptoms can vary a great deal, and men and women often experience different symptoms. Some of the most common symptoms both genders might feel include:
- Chest pain, either mild or severe, usually felt as pressure or a squeezing sensation
- Squeezing pressure in the upper body
- Pain in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach
- Nausea or indigestion
- Lightheadedness or fainting
- Breaking out in a cold sweat
Women may more often experience:
- Arm, shoulder, or neck pain
- Fatigue and nausea which can be mistaken as a stomach bug or another minor ailment
UR Medicine's Treatments for Heart Attack
Angioplasty and stent placement. A thin tube (catheter) is inserted through a blood vessel and threaded up to the blocked artery. A tiny “balloon” is then used to open up the blockage. A stent—a miniature wire tube—is placed in the blood vessel to hold it open and allow blood to flow normally.
Coronary artery bypass surgery. A blood vessel is taken from another part of your body and used to go around—or bypass—the blocked coronary artery. This open-heart surgery is often used for patients with more severe blockages or those with several blockages.
Clot-busting medications. These medications are given through an IV and do not involve surgery. They can also be given in any area emergency room before patients are transferred to Strong Memorial Hospital for other treatments discussed above.
Every Second Counts: After the Heart Attack
"I went into cardiac arrest during a meeting. And that put me in danger of brain damage."
Father Salmon, President of McQuaid Jesuit High School, suffered a cardiac arrest during a meeting. Even if he survived, he was in danger of brain damage.
What Sets Us Apart?
Recovery from a heart attack depends on how quickly it’s treated. A key way to measure the speed of a facility is its "door-to-balloon time"—from when a patient with a heart attack arrives in the emergency department until that person's coronary artery is re-opened with a balloon catheter.
At UR Medicine Cardiac Care, we’ve optimized our process to cut door-to-balloon time to under 90 minutes, beating the national standard. Our speed in treating heart attacks places us in the top 10% of all hospitals in the country.
Our Heart Attack Team is on standby 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year, and we are one of the few heart centers in the country that has the ability to use temporary heart pumps to help a patient's heart through the period of most intense shock.
Other hospitals send us their most challenging cases. They trust us because they know we’re able to treat every kind of cardiac problem, from the simplest to the most complex.
We’re also leaders in clinical research. Our researchers have developed heart care advances and devices that are used around the world.
And we’ve created the region’s only Women’s Heart Program, because there are differences between women and men when it comes to heart problems. These include risk factors, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and outcomes. We’ve built an entire team of experts around personalized heart care for women.
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