This item is not that much use, but it is where we start. The problem with heart disease is that it is a chronic developing condition that is internal. The problem is that we have a limited ability to sense even pain internally and what signals you do get cannot be trusted. You will not understand this in the middle of a heart attack
In the meantime a heart attack is a sudden onset event. That means first time heartburn is not a good thing, nor other strange pains in peripheral arteries. Please run to the hospital after you take your aspirin. If you have the standard indicators, then start an aspirin regimen and possibly avoid the problem for longer at least.
Let us return to heartburn however. Chronic heartburn is most likely the real indicator of chronic angina. Food can cause the effect, but not on a chronic basis simply because almost no one continues abusing themselves if their stomach goes on rebellion.
I personally had heart burn for years and got no meaningful advice from the medical profession at all. Without any warning whatsoever, I then proceeded to have a major heart attack. I had no heart beat for a full twenty minutes but was fortunate to have medical quality CPR instantly available. In the event I did recover well and my heart has also substantially recovered from the damage seven years ago.
It is noteworthy that in that time I have never had a recurrence of heart burn.
Thus from my sample of one, I suggest that one needs to treat chronic heartburn as an angina attack and to simply experiment with the nitroglycerin tablets. This is cheap and safe to do. If it then goes away, you have a clear proof of just what you are dealing with and can act accordingly.
By Charlotte Libov
Most people experience minor twinges of chest pain now and then. And when it happens, we can’t help but wonder if it is something serious. Is it heartburn or a heart attack?
These two maladies have similar symptoms, but very different outcomes. Delaying treatment of heart attack may cost you your life. On the other hand, no one wants to take an ambulance trip if the pain could be cleared up with an antacid.
“The reason that heartburn has ‘heart’ in its name is because it’s extremely difficult to differentiate a heart attack from heartburn,” says Harvey Kramer, M.D., director of Cardiovascular Disease Prevention at Danbury (Conn.) Hospital.
The first thing to consider is your heart attack risk, according to Chauncey Crandall, M.D. “People with coronary heart disease, heart attack survivors, or those who have undergone coronary artery bypass surgery or had a stent implanted should not hesitate to get help,” says Dr. Crandall, chief of the Cardiac Transplant Program at the Palm Beach Cardiovascular Clinic.
If you are over 50, have a family history of heart disease, have high blood pressure, diabetes, are obese, or inactive, you are also at greater risk and should err on the side of caution.
There are also key differences in the symptoms of heartburn and a heart attack that can help you decide whether to call 911, say Dr. Crandall and Dr. Kramer.
Where is the Pain Located?
If the pain is located in the center of the chest, the shoulder, jaw, neck, or back, it may be a heart attack. On the other hand, if the pain is a burning sensation in the throat and is accompanied by a bitter taste in the back of the throat, that’s most likely heartburn.
When Does the Pain Strike?
If the pain occurs shortly after you’ve eaten, it may very well be heartburn, especially if you lie down after eating. Heart attack chest pain more commonly occurs during exertion. Cardiac pain generally does not occur at rest, while heartburn does.
Heart attack symptoms may include shortness of breath, sweating, fainting, nausea, and lightheadedness. These do not often happen with heartburn. “If you get associated symptoms like sweating and shortness of breath with the discomfort, that’s more likely to be caused by cardiac chest pain, not heartburn,” notes Dr. Kramer. “Women often present with atypical symptoms of heart attack, so they are more likely to experience these symptoms.”
If you are on antibiotics or other medications that could irritate the stomach, that’s an indication for heartburn. For people who take nitroglycerin for angina relief, things can be tricky. Sometimes nitroglycerin relieves the pain of heartburn.
Remember, there are no hard-and-fast rules. If you’re experiencing chest pain that you suspect may be heart-related, chew a 325-milligram aspirin if you have one handy, but don’t hesitate – calling 911 is your first priority. Also, don’t drive to the hospital yourself. An ambulance is a better option because emergency measures can be taken on the way to the hospital that could save your life.
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