The muscles of the heart normally require oxygen-rich blood that is to be supplied constantly so as to make sure it functions properly. The vessels responsible for this supply of blood are the coronary arteries.
In the case of a coronary artery disease, blood never flows as usual because of the narrowing of these arteries. This is usually a result of proteins, fatty matter, calcium and inflammatory cells multiplying inside the arteries vessels forming different sized plaques which are often soft on the inside part but hard on the outside.
A ‘plaque rupture’ occurs when the outer shell cracks due to the hardening of the plaque, also due to disc - shaped platelets that aid in blood clotting, blocking the artery causing the muscle of the heart to starve from oxygen loss. After this has occurred, the heart muscle cells become inactive permanently and this is what we call a heart attack.
There is another cause of a heart attack which is caused by a coronary attack spasm. This is where coronary arteries restrict something we call an on/off spasm that reduces the supply of blood to the ischemia (heart muscle). This condition can be unusual because it mostly occurs in people who don’t have any kind of coronary artery disease or even when one is at rest (not active).
Specific coronary arteries supply blood to a certain part of the heart and the extent of damage made to the heart muscle depends on the part getting blood from the artery as well as treatment in relation to the time of injury.
The heart muscles soon begin healing after a heart attack and it takes apparently 7 to 8 weeks, faster than a skin wound to fully heal. A scar occurs to the tissues due to the wound that was caused to the damaged area. This scarred tissues never contracts fully, therefore the ability of the heart to pump is lessened after getting an attack.
Symptoms of a heart attack
• Pains in the chest, arms, and the breastbone
• Jaw, arm, and throat discomfort
• Feeling of dizziness, nausea, vomiting and frequent sweating
• Anxiety, weakness and short of breath
• Palpitations (irregular heartbeats)
What to do after an attack
After an attack, one needs to get treatment as quick as possible. This treatment is usually to unblock the affected artery as well as lessen the amount of damage. It is recommended to treat a heart attack within 1-2hrs of the symptoms onset because waiting longer than this may reduce your chances of survival or cause permanent damage to the heart.
How many heart attacks can one person survive?
Over the years there have been people who survived multiple heart attacks depending on various factors that were involved. There is a case in 1994 where a patient survived 13 heart attacks before his death. These possibilities are mainly determined by how quickly you are attended to.
The idea is to treat the condition quickly before there is any severe damage to the heart muscles. This is why it’s important for people to recognize the symptoms of a heart attack and call for help immediately. For those with ready access to modern health facilities with heart specialists, their chances are improved.
Because the muscles will heal, a person can have several attacks before the heart muscles become too damaged, just like the 1994 case study. The other factors to consider involve the measures taken by the individual afterward.
Proper care, which will help the heart heal better, making it possible to survive even the next heart attack. Nevertheless, it is still advisable to do whatever you can to prevent the heart attack from happening in the first place.
A person will have more chances of survival if:
• You are younger than 60 years old,
• You are a man. Men are more likely to have heart attacks when compared to women. However, women are more likely to die from a heart attack once they have one.
• You don’t smoke, use drugs or are an alcoholic,
• You don’t have any chronic diseases such as diabetes, kidney diseases, liver diseases, etc.
• You have a healthy diet and eat more fibers,
• You take aspirin daily as a protection, etc.
Please visit this link if you think you might have, or a friend might have any of these symptoms.