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  • Writer's pictureOren Zarif

Heart Attack and Stroke - What Are the Symptoms of a Heart Attack? - Oren Zarif - Heart Stroke

The severity and location of a heart attack or stroke affect the outlook for stroke victims. Depending on the time of diagnosis, some may have long-term disability and even loss of brain function, but others may recover completely. The key is to be treated as quickly as possible, because the longer you delay treatment, the worse it will become. The length of hospital stay is determined by the type of stroke and how severe it is. In the case of a heart attack, different tests are needed to determine the level of heart muscle damage.

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Common symptoms of a heart attack include shortness of breath, chest discomfort, cold sweat, nausea, lightheadedness, and dizziness. Other signs may include difficulty speaking, face drooping, neck, back, or jaw pain, or confusion. If you experience any of these symptoms, call 911 or seek medical treatment right away. If you or a loved one is unconscious, perform CPR and call 911. If you see the symptoms of a heart attack, you may have a stroke.

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While many heart attack risk factors are unchangeable, there are ways to lower your risk. Changing your lifestyle, talking to your doctor, and taking medications can reduce your risk. Your diet should be high in fruits and vegetables, and protein. Limiting red meat and processed food is important, but you should also limit your intake of them. If your doctor has determined that your diet is not heart-healthy, they can recommend a diet plan containing plenty of lean protein and healthy fats.

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Another way to assess your risk of a heart attack is to measure your pulse pressure. If the heart is beating normally, it will raise the arterial pressure during a fraction of the cardiac cycle. A normal, vigorous heartbeat will eject greater stroke volumes during a portion of a cardiac cycle. An increase in stroke volume will raise arterial pressure twice as high as it did the previous time it beat. You should also check the patient's heart rate.

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While a heart attack is much worse than a stroke, it is far more dangerous and often silent. A heart attack can severely damage the heart's muscle, and even the brain can suffer severe damage. Most heart attacks are caused by coronary artery disease, a condition that results in plaque buildup on the walls of the arteries. Without oxygen, the heart muscle begins to die. If this happens, restarting blood flow is crucial to preventing further damage to the brain.

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As the most common causes of death in the U.S., heart disease and stroke are the fifth-leading causes of death. Heart attacks cause nearly 730,000 deaths in the country each year. Of these, only 210,000 are new cases, as they affect people who have already suffered a heart attack. Stroke is the most common type of stroke, accounting for over $320 billion in health care costs per year. And yet it's preventable.

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While the cause of a heart attack and stroke is unknown, medical research has improved treatments, enabling more people to survive. New medicines, procedures, and devices are improving outcomes and reducing the amount of brain damage. A patient can suffer irreversible damage to the heart muscle when it is deprived of blood for 20 minutes or more. Fortunately, there are emergency procedures and medicines that can minimize the damage done to the heart muscle. Many people survive heart attacks and strokes today thanks to the advances in medicine and technology.

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If you suspect that you or a loved one is suffering from a heart attack or a stroke, the first thing to do is call 911 or go to the hospital. The sooner you get medical attention, the better the chance of recovery. Even though a heart attack or stroke is dangerous, proper treatment can save lives. There are no warning signs of a stroke until the symptoms have become more serious and require immediate attention. With the right treatment, you can recover from this devastating illness.

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