One of the most important organs in our organism is the heart. The modern way of life, nutrition, weight, age and physical fitness significantly influence the functioning of our heart. In addition to the stroke, the coronary heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in Europe and Switzerland. Experts observe that people can be affected from the middle of their 30th year.

Many underestimate the effects of an untreated heart attack (HA). Cardiac death can also occur a few weeks after the actual event.

Any indication of coronary heart disease should be cardiologically examined.

Formation

The heart is crossed with coronary arteries (coronary arteries) and is thus supplied with oxygen. The heart needs about 6% of the oxygen produced by the body at rest and about 25% during exercise. If there is a occlusion (blood clot) or a severe narrowing of the blood vessels, this is called a HA.

If the heart is not supplied with oxygen as quickly as possible, parts of the heart can die. In emergency medicine there is the so-called „golden hour“, within which time irreversible damage to the heart can be limited. If individual parts of the heart die, scar tissue develops there, which can lead to cardiac arrhythmia and sudden cardiac death.

Causes

The main cause of a coronary heart disease is arteriosclerosis and this is referred to as coronary artery disease (CAD). This water calcification is a disease of the arteries leading from the heart to the individual organs. If limescale and fat (LDL cholesterol) are deposited on these vessels, plaques are formed. The deposits narrow the vessels and limit the elasticity of the vessel walls. As a result, circulatory disorders or complete vascular occlusion occur.

Symptoms

Typical triggers for a coronary heart disease are situations with increased blood pressure, to be stressed. But the most common time for coronary heart disease is in the morning after getting up and those already suffering from coronary heart disease. If blood circulation is initially disrupted, severe chest pain (angina pectoris) can occur as a harbinger of HA.

Specific symptoms of a heart attack

A sudden and strong feeling of pressure and pain behind the breastbone and / or left breast. The pain radiates in both arms, in the upper abdomen and / or in the back between the shoulder blades. The pain persists for more than a few minutes.

Unspecific symptoms of a heart attack

Anxiety, pallor, shortness of breath, shock, restlessness, dizziness and nausea

Clarification

If a person has the slightest suspicion of angina pectoris or a HA, a medical examination should be started immediately. An EKG (electrocardiography) and a laboratory test of the blood are carried out first. The ECG is used to localize the HA and the laboratory values ​​(Troponine-T, Troponine-I) show the damage to the heart.

If a HA is confirmed, an echocardiography (ultrasound examination of the heart) is carried out to show the size and function of the HA.

An examination with the heart catheter measures the occlusion strength of the coronary arteries. Stents can be used simultaneously in connection with this examination.

Magnetic resonance imaging of the heart can also provide additional information on the damage to the heart.

Risk factors

Risk factors for arteriosclerosis are high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, nicotine, obesity, sleep apnea and fat metabolism disorders (including LDL cholesterol). In addition, there is an unhealthy diet, overweight, lack of exercise and stress. these risk factors. Unfortunately, according to new studies, an inherited burden also plays an important role.

Prevention

To reduce your risk of a HA, you can significantly reduce the following points: A healthy lifestyle with a healthy, balanced diet and regular exercise can already significantly reduce the risk.

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