As the number one cause of death in the United States, heart disease should be a major concern for everyone regardless of age or gender. February has been designated as American Heart Month to encourage greater awareness of managing the risk factors of heart disease and understanding the importance of getting emergency care right away for heart attack symptoms. If you would like to explore ways of managing your risk factors of heart disease, you can turn to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center —a leading heart hospital in Las Vegas.
Myth: Heart Attacks Are Mostly Unpreventable
If you have a strong family history of heart disease, you are indeed at a greater risk of developing heart problems such as myocardial infarction. However, you do have the choice of managing other risk factors such as your lifestyle decisions. The risk factors you can manage through lifestyle changes include the following:
- Exposure to second-hand smoke
- Physical inactivity
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Illicit drug use
In addition, taking steps to manage underlying medical conditions can help reduce your risk of a heart attack . Some medical conditions that can affect your heart health include diabetes, sleep apnea, high blood pressure, and being overweight or obese.
Myth: Heart Attacks Are Easily Recognizable
The most well-known symptom of a heart attack is chest pain. However, not everyone who suffers a heart attack experiences chest pain. Some symptoms are much subtler—these can include fatigue, nausea, and shortness of breath.
Myth: After a Heart Attack, Exercise Is Dangerous
Immediately following a heart attack, you will need to get plenty of rest. However, gradually increasing your physical activity is crucial for your long-term recovery and reducing your risk of another heart attack. Consider going through a cardiac rehabilitation program at your heart hospital, which typically includes physical therapy and exercise guidance.
Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center provides a continuum of heart hospital services for patients—from emergency care to cardiac rehabilitation . Families throughout the greater Las Vegas area can rely on our heart hospital for preventive wellness services, non-invasive cardiology care, and sophisticated heart surgeries. Our emergency care team encourages patients to call 911 if they experience heart attack symptoms; otherwise, patients can request a physician referral by calling (702) 233-5300.
At a heart hospital , providers take different approaches for male and female cardiology patients. This is because women have unique risk factors for cardiovascular disease and they tend to experience heart attacks differently than men. Unfortunately, women are also at a greater risk of dying from a heart attack compared to men, given that women are more likely to delay seeking emergency care. At Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center in Las Vegas, our cardiology team urges all individuals to call 911 right away for heart attack symptoms.
Misconceptions about Heart Attacks
One reason why women may delay getting emergency care for heart attack symptoms is that it’s commonly assumed that heart attacks primarily affect older men. However, women and men of any age can suffer a heart attack. Heart attacks have been reported in women in their 20s and 30s. A heart attack can occur in a woman who considers herself to be physically fit, which is why it’s important to be aware of other risk factors such as family history and underlying heart conditions. It’s even possible for medications to increase the risk of a heart attack in a younger woman. For example, when you watch this featured video, you’ll hear a physician explain how birth control pills can increase the risk of blood clots, which in turn may cause a heart attack.
Differences in Heart Attack Symptoms
Another possible reason for delays in heart attack care is that women are less likely than men to suffer from chest pain caused by myocardial infarction . Instead, they may experience non-specific symptoms such as shortness of breath, fatigue, weakness, cold sweats, and anxiety.
Priorities Other Than Self-Care
It’s not uncommon for women to put others before themselves. Some women hesitate to call 911 because of family or work obligations. They may reason that they’ll feel embarrassed if their symptoms weren’t caused by a heart attack. Emergency care providers encourage women to err on the side of caution, since calling 911 can save their lives.
Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center is a leading heart hospital that proudly serves the Las Vegas area. At our heart hospital, patients can benefit from our sophisticated Cardiac Catheterization Labs, Valve Program, Atrial Fibrillation Program, and the area’s first Hybrid OR. For emergency care, please call 911 right away; otherwise, you can request a physician referral by calling our Consult-A-Nurse line at (702) 233-5300.
When a heart attack strikes, every minute matters. The sooner a heart attack patient seeks emergency care at a heart hospital , the better the outcome is likely to be. This is because when blood flow to the heart is obstructed, the heart muscle begins to die. The body replaces damaged tissue with scar tissue, which cannot function properly like normal tissue. Irreversible heart damage causes long-term health problems, but patients can minimize heart damage by calling 911 right away. The emergency care team of Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center encourages our neighbors to become familiar with the early warning signs of myocardial infarction.
Some symptoms of a heart attack may develop weeks or even months before the heart attack itself occurs. These can include a rapid or irregular heartbeat. Sometimes, a rapid heartbeat may indicate ventricular tachycardia, which is defined as at least three irregular heartbeats in a row and a pulse rate of more than 100 beats per minute. It may occur before or after a heart attack and it can cause sudden death. Cardiologists advise that patients call 911 immediately for emergency care if they suspect they may have ventricular tachycardia.
It’s easy to mistake some signs of a heart attack as being benign symptoms, especially when they are gastrointestinal symptoms. These can include indigestion, nausea, and stomach pain with no apparent cause.
Exhaustion or fatigue is another sign of an impending heart attack that may occur long before the cardiac event. Fatigue goes well beyond ordinary tiredness. The fatigue associated with a heart attack may be described as being similar to fatigue caused by mononucleosis. In other words, it can feel “crushing” or disabling.
Even if you aren’t sure whether your symptoms are caused by a heart attack, cardiologists generally agree that it’s best to seek emergency care just in case you do have a life-threatening condition. Please call 911 immediately if you think you could be suffering a heart attack. Otherwise, you can get in touch with a registered nurse at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center—a heart hospital in Las Vegas—by calling (702) 233-5300.
Myocardial infarction, more commonly called a heart attack, occurs when the flow of blood to the heart is disrupted. In most cases, blood flow becomes obstructed due to a build-up of fatty deposits in the coronary arteries. Eventually, a deposit or plaque can rupture and form a blood clot. If the blood clot is large enough, it can block circulation through the artery and cause a heart attack. Because a heart attack can quickly cause irreversible damage to the heart muscle, it’s crucial to recognize the signs that emergency care is needed. For emergency care in the Las Vegas area, Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center is available around the clock.
Crushing chest pain is perhaps the most easily recognizable heart attack symptom. However, women often experience discomfort associated with a cardiac event differently than men. When women suffer from chest pain, they’re more likely to experience it as pressure, squeezing, or even a sensation of fullness. Women may experience discomfort elsewhere in the upper body, including the back, neck, jaw, shoulders, arms, and abdomen.
Not all of the symptoms of a heart attack necessarily have to occur simultaneously and abruptly. Fatigue is one possible sign of a heart attack that women may experience days or weeks ahead of the event itself. Women may feel unusually exhausted and short of breath when doing simple, everyday tasks.
Flu-like symptoms can include dizziness and lightheadedness. Nausea, indigestion, cold sweats, and clammy skin can also occur. Women are advised to take these symptoms seriously, especially if they occur along with other possible signs of a cardiac event.
It’s often difficult to determine the difference between a panic attack and a heart attack based on symptoms alone. Both can cause feelings of impending doom or extreme anxiety, especially in women. Diagnostic tests at the emergency care department can quickly reveal whether a woman has suffered a heart attack.
The Heart Center at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center treats more cardiology patients than any other heart hospital in the greater Las Vegas area. Our emergency care, heart health, and stroke care providers are dedicated to upholding the highest standards of healthcare excellence. If you would like to learn more about the services available at our heart hospital, you can call (702) 233-5300 and speak with a registered nurse.