Symptoms of a Heart Attack
The Importance of Immediate Medical Treatment
This year, between four and five million Americans
will be assessed in the emergency department for chest pain. Of these, about 1.5 million will be diagnosed with a heart attack.
Heart attacks are the leading cause of death in the United States, with 600,000 dying annually of heart disease. Early diagnosis and treatment of a heart attack significantly reduces the potential for death. It is very important to seek medical treatment immediately when the signs and symptoms of a heart attack occur.
Symptoms of Heart Attack
- pressure or crushing pain in the center of the chest that may radiate down the left arm or into the jaw area;
- nausea; and/or vomiting
- shortness of breath.
Any chest pain that lasts more than ten minutes could be a sign of a heart attack. If you are experiencing such pain, please call 911 or go to the nearest emergency department.
Accredited Chest Pain Center
The Society of Chest Pain Centers granted the designation of Accredited Chest Pain Center to Central Baptist Hospital in December of 2005 and redesignated in September of 2008. Central Baptist Hospital is the 4th accredited Chest Pain Center in Kentucky and the 198th in the nation. The goal of the Society of Chest Pain Centers is to significantly reduce the mortality rate of heart attack patients by teaching the public to recognize and react to the early symptoms of a possible heart attack, reduce the time that it takes to receive treatment, and increase the accuracy and effectiveness of treatment. The Chest Pain Center at the Central Baptist Hospital has demonstrated its expertise and commitment to quality patient care by meeting or exceeding a wide set of stringent criteria and completing on-site evaluations by a review team from the Society of Chest Pain Centers.Our chest pain observation services are designed to care for patients who are suffering the signs and symptoms of heart attack or chest pain. Patients are evaluated, monitored and tested by nurses and physicians experienced in caring for patients with heart attack symptoms. Rapid assessment allows the patient to be evaluated for the need for blood-thinning medications or procedures to reopen blockages in the heart.
Although chest pain is the most common symptom of a heart attack, it can also result from other medical problems. Non-heart-related causes of chest pain can include indigestion, gallbladder attacks, pleurisy, muscle strains, a broken rib, viral infections or a ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm. Some of these problems are serious, but others are not. Central Baptist Hospital's emergency department has the resources to care for them all.
Patients who are having a heart attack are stabilized in our emergency department. If appropriate, cardiac catheterization is performed. The patient is then admitted to one of our cardiac nursing units where they can receive special, individualized care.
For More Information
For more information please call Central Baptist Hospital's Baptist Heart & Vascular Institute at 859-260-5500.