Cardiology

Postconditioning during PCI for STEMI shows delayed benefits

(HealthDay)—The benefits of postconditioning (PostC) balloon inflations in patients with ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) may not be apparent immediately, ...

Cardiology

Lower mortality seen for cardiac care at top-ranked hospitals

(HealthDay)—Compared with nonranked hospitals, top-ranked hospitals have lower 30-day mortality but similar or higher readmission rates for cardiovascular conditions, according to a study published online Nov. 28 in JAMA ...

Cardiology

Older, frail heart attack patients at greater risk of bleeding

Many older patients who are considered frail by medical standards receive anticoagulants (blood thinners) and undergo cardiac catheterization during a heart attack. While these treatments can be helpful, they also can cause ...

Cardiology

Higher risk of heart attack on Christmas Eve

The risk of heart attack peaks at around 10pm on Christmas Eve, particularly for older and sicker people, most likely due to heightened emotional stress, finds a Swedish study in this week's Christmas issue of The BMJ.

Cardiology

Certain SGLT2 inhibitors, GLP-1 RAs for T2DM also cut CV risk

(HealthDay)—Certain sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors and glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RAs) demonstrate significant cardiovascular (CV) benefit and should be used for reducing CV risk ...

Cardiology

A sobering conclusion: Adult hearts contain no stem cells

A detailed cell-by-cell map of all dividing cells in the adult murine heart before and after myocardial infarction was created using advanced molecular and genetic technologies in a combined research effort led by Hans Clevers ...

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Myocardial infarction (MI) or acute myocardial infarction (AMI), commonly known as a heart attack, results from the interruption of blood supply to a part of the heart, causing heart cells to die. This is most commonly due to occlusion (blockage) of a coronary artery following the rupture of a vulnerable atherosclerotic plaque, which is an unstable collection of lipids (cholesterol and fatty acids) and white blood cells (especially macrophages) in the wall of an artery. The resulting ischemia (restriction in blood supply) and ensuing oxygen shortage, if left untreated for a sufficient period of time, can cause damage or death (infarction) of heart muscle tissue (myocardium).

Classical symptoms of acute myocardial infarction include sudden chest pain (typically radiating to the left arm or left side of the neck), shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, palpitations, sweating, and anxiety (often described as a sense of impending doom). Women may experience fewer typical symptoms than men, most commonly shortness of breath, weakness, a feeling of indigestion, and fatigue. Approximately one-quarter of all myocardial infarctions are "silent", that is without chest pain or other symptoms.

Among the diagnostic tests available to detect heart muscle damage are an electrocardiogram (ECG), echocardiography, cardiac MRI and various blood tests. The most often used blood markers are the creatine kinase-MB (CK-MB) fraction and the troponin levels. Immediate treatment for suspected acute myocardial infarction includes oxygen, aspirin, and sublingual nitroglycerin.

Most cases of STEMI (ST elevation MI) are treated with thrombolysis or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). NSTEMI (non-ST elevation MI) should be managed with medication, although PCI is often performed during hospital admission. In people who have multiple blockages and who are relatively stable, or in a few emergency cases, bypass surgery may be an option, especially in diabetics.

Heart attacks are the leading cause of death for both men and women worldwide. Important risk factors are previous cardiovascular disease, older age, tobacco smoking, high blood levels of certain lipids (triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein) and low levels of high density lipoprotein (HDL), diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, chronic kidney disease, heart failure, excessive alcohol consumption, the abuse of certain drugs (such as cocaine and methamphetamine), and chronic high stress levels.

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