A Heart Attack, Cardiac Arrest, and Stroke Are Not The Same. Here Are The Key Differences
There are three main culprits for countless deaths on the front of cardiovascular health failure: heart attack, cardiac arrest, and stroke. However, many of us just seem to associate each of these three different cardiovascular issues with the words “heart problems”.
It’s time to once and for all set the record straight exactly what experiencing each of these particular issues exactly means, and maybe even save a life in the process by looking for some early warning signs!
Heart attack, “is your heart…attacking you?!”
Inside your body you have a whole network of blood vessels around your heart called coronary arteries which transport that all life-giving oxygen. A heart attack occurs when a coronary artery becomes blocked all of a sudden cutting off the oxygen supply. Thus the heart becomes injured, if not fatally damaged, at the place of the attack.
From the outside, in the beginning, this feels a lot like the symptoms of heart burn (so be alert), additionally with shortness of breath, a slight pressure or “tightening” in the chest, and irregular heartbeats.
For Women: The symptoms of heart attack can differ slightly and include more pain in unusual places like in the jaw or arms, and disturbances in sleep.
(If you experience any of these symptoms, especially more than one, it is HIGHLEY recommended that you seek medical attention immediately)
Cardiac arrest, “The silent killer”
Considered quite lethal, cardiac arrest can occur without warning, unlike a heart attack that has symptoms. This is because cardiac arrest is an electrical (your brain runs on chemical “electricity”) malfunction of the heart where the involuntary signals your brain sends to your heart to keep it pumping simply cease without warning.
Without your heart pumping blood, your body and brain become starved of oxygen and you can die within minutes. The person who this has happened to will collapse and lose consciousness, and when you check their pulse it will be gone, but they could still be very much alive!
It sounds quite scary, I know, but if you notice somebody do this it is a code-red EMERGENCY and highly imperative that medical personal come to the aid of the person whom you have discovered this has happened to.
A stroke is the outlier of the three culprits here, because rather than dealing directly with the heart, a stroke pertains to the occurrence of a blockage or “clot” with a blood vessel or vessels in the brain. Whenever oxygen is deprived to the cells within the brain damage can occur on a small-scale, large-scale, or ultimately result in death depending on the extant and duration of the blood clot.
The stroke association recommends that you learn the acronym “F.A.S.T” to watch out for the symptoms and call 911. The acronym stands for face-drooping/face numbness, arm weakness, speech difficulty/speech slurring, and time to call 911.
Now that you are familiar with the difference between these three often confused conditions, and know their symptoms, I hope that you will be able to bring forth this knowledge in the protection of your loved ones (or even yourself!)!
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