Lack of blood flow to one section of heart muscle results in the death of a part of the heart and is called “Heart Attack.” Oxygen-rich blood is supplied to the heart through three major coronary arteries running over the surface of the heart.
Coronary artery disease results from the deposition of a waxy substance called cholesterol which builds up a plaque inside the arterial wall over years of fat consumption, smoking, lack of exercise, obesity, and stress. Diabetes and hypertension accelerate this process of atherosclerosis in coronary arteries.
Plaque in the coronary artery can get eroded or ruptured one fine morning without any warning symptoms leading to acute heart attacks. Sudden death can occur in approximately 20-30% of patients at home or on the way to the hospital. This usually happens due to sudden stoppage of effective heartbeat called Ventricular Tachycardia or Ventricular Fibrillation (VT or VF). In a hospital setting, such arrhythmias are treated by DC Cardioversion (Shock). Let’s read about the feeling after heart attack that you undergo and how it is treated.
Heart Attack Symptoms
Many patients are not sure of heart attack symptoms, hence delay in responding and reaching the hospital. Some of the most common heart attack symptoms are Chest Pain or discomfort in the center of the chest or left arm. It feels like pressure, squeezing, fullness, and it can also feel like indigestion, heartburn, or throat choking. Dizziness, vomiting and breathlessness can also accompany these symptoms. Breaking out in cold sweats, extreme tiredness, unusual decline in stamina are also symptoms of a heart attack. Sometimes, the signs are so subtle that people are surprised to know that they have suffered a heart attack. Quickly taking a Dispirin dissolved in water at home and rushing to the nearest cath lab enabled hospital is the key to survival. If you are aware of the feeling after heart attack, you will respond promptly and seek treatment.
Heart Attack Treatment
Heart attack treatment should be instituted as early as possible to minimize the damage caused due to lack of oxygen-rich blood supply. Heart attack treatment constitutes resuming blood flow through the blocked artery either by drugs like thrombolytic or mechanical revascularization, as in angioplasty and putting a scaffolding tube (stent) inside the artery. This procedure is very swift and safe in expert hands.
Prevention of CAD should be observed in avoiding cholesterol-rich food, trans-fat and excessive sweets, regular exercise of 30 minutes brisk walk—no tobacco use, control of blood pressure and diabetes and taking regular medication prescribed by your physician. A stress-free lifestyle goes a long way in preventing premature CAD.
After the recovery phase, many patients face ‘worry’ as the main feeling after heart attack due to fear of another heart attack. Sometimes they feel depressed, anxious and these are the ones who are more susceptible to another heart attack. As in heartbreak, the feeling of loneliness surrounds a traumatized mind, feeling after heart attack is similar- doom and gloomy perspective of further productive years of his career. Large-scale studies show that 15% of people who survive a heart attack become quite seriously depressed in the first few weeks, and another 25% experience mild depression or anxiety. Anxiolytic and anti-depression drugs may be taken for the relief of symptoms.
Resumption of sexual activity is also ridden with substantial anxiety and fear of overexerting oneself during this physical and emotional experience. It is advised to resume slow sexual activity after a few weeks of recovery from a heart attack and avoid taking drugs like Viagra (sildenafil), mainly if your doctor has prescribed nitrates. This may result in a sharp fall in blood pressure and feel dizzy. Driving is also permitted after a few weeks of heart attack if it is free of complications like Heart Failure. Support from family and friends is of utmost relevance in recovery from a heart attack. Joining social groups, interacting with people who have recovered from a heart attack and participating in creative, entertaining hobbies will help recover faster after a heart attack.