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What Should You Do When Someone Gets Heart Attack?

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

A heart attack is a serious medical condition when a blood clot suddenly blocks the supply of blood to the heart. It is often accompanied by a lasting, vice-like pain in the chest which may spread to the arms, jaw, back, neck or stomach.

A heart attack is a medical emergency and the first aid provided can at times even decide whether the person will survive or not. The sooner the person gets medical assistance, the more the chances of survival.
Prompt medical treatment help to manage the amount of damage to the heart.

Signs Of Heart Attack

  • Discomfort in the chest lasting for more than a few minutes or coming and going. There may be a feeling of heaviness, fullness, squeezing, or pain.
  • An ache or pain in the upper body, such as the arms, back, neck, jaw, or stomach. There may be general pain or discomfort.
  • Breathing problems may occur. It may also be accompanied by chest discomfort.
  • An unusual temperature, a cold sweat, nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness, or dizziness may occur. These symptoms are commonly experienced by women more often than men.

A heart attack is often confused with cardiac arrest, although both are medical emergencies, cardiac arrest is typically more severe and can result in death within minutes without proper medical care.

Benefits of first aid for heart attacks

Dr. Ashish Bajaj, M.B.B.S., M.D.

Also Read: Difference Between Heart Attack and Cardiac Arrest

This article gives you a quick overview of the protocol to be followed when someone gets a heart attack:

  • Make sure the person sits down comfortably
  • Get the person to calm down and rest
  • Loosen tight clothing, if any
  • If the person is in a state to talk, ask if they are on any medication for heart problems or chest pain.
  • If the pain doesn’t subside after the person is seated, call emergency medical help.
  • If the person is unconscious, perform CPR.

Everyone can get trained in basic life support skills. BLS certification courses are available everywhere. Proper CPR technique is very important which is taught in BLS courses.

Dr. M.G. Kartheeka, MBBS, MD

How is CPR performed?

CPR- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation is basically a two-fold process. It involves making sure that the heart pumps blood to the body by compressing the chest and providing artificial respiration by blowing oxygen into the lungs.

To perform chest compression,

  • kneel down next to the victim of the heart problem
  • Place the heel of one hand on the victim’s lower sternum
  • Place the heel of the second hand on top of the first hand and interlock your fingers
  • Keep your elbows straight and put all your body weight on the heels of your hand.
  • Press down firmly and quickly, to get a downward movement of 4-5 cm. Relax and compress again. Do not lose contact between the hands and the sternum.
  • Try compressing at a rate of 100 per minute.
  • After 30 compressions, give artificial respiration twice and maintain a ratio of 30:2 till professional help arrives.

    To give a person artificial respiration
  • Pinch the nostrils shut
  • Take a deep breath and blow into the person’s mouth. It ideally takes about 2 seconds to inflate the person’s chest.
  • Repeat the process a couple of times
  • Check to see if the person’s chest inflates when you blow in, which it should if enough air is being blown in.
  • Repeat this procedure until help arrives or till the person starts breathing again.

Also Read: 20  Healthy Heart Tips

Disclaimer:  The information provided here is for educational/awareness purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional and should not be relied upon to diagnose or treat any medical condition. The reader should consult a registered medical practitioner to determine the appropriateness of the information and before consuming any medication. PharmEasy does not provide any guarantee or warranty (express or implied) regarding the accuracy, adequacy, completeness, legality, reliability or usefulness of the information; and disclaims any liability arising thereof.

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