Heart Attack: Get Help Fast

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Heart Attack

If you experience chest pain that persists for more than 15 minutes or have any other reason to believe you may be having a heart attack, don't delay. Call for emergency help, advises the August issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter.

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Every year, about 1 million Americans experience a heart attack. Unfortunately, on average, people usually wait about three hours after their signs and symptoms first appear before seeking medical care.

Time is critical when a heart attack is underway because heart muscle is dying. A heart attack results from an interference with blood supply leading to injury of the heart muscle. Usually the problem is due to blocked circulation in one or more of the heart's coronary arteries.

Immediate emergency medical care can mean the difference between life and death. The steps taken by paramedics and by the staff at the emergency department are designed to detect, interrupt and treat a heart attack. And the quicker, the better.

Mayo Clinic Health Letter is an eight-page monthly newsletter of reliable, accurate and practical information on today's health and medical news. To subscribe, please call toll free 800-333-9037, extension 9PR1.

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