Heart Attacks

According to the American Heart Association, approximately every 25 seconds, an American will experience a coronary event, and approximately every minute, someone will die of one.

Coronary artery disease is the disease of heart blood vessels that leads to fatty deposits to form on the vessel walls. These deposits, called plaques, can grow and grow until the vessel narrows.

There are generally two types of heart attacks: – those related to decreased blood flow from gradual narrowing of heart artery, sometimes called a “minor heart attack” – those related to a plaque rupture causing a sudden and complete occlusion of the heart artery, sometimes referred to a “major heart attack”

The symptoms may include chest pain, chest pressure, nausea, arm pain/tingling, shortness of breath, sweating, racing heart beat, or dizziness.

If you think you or someone you know is having a heart attack, call 9-1-1 immediately. This is a life threatening situation.

Diagnosing a major heart attack generally requires an electrocardiogram and possibly some blood tests. The heart leaks chemicals into the blood during a heart attack that can be detected through blood draws.

Treatment of heart attacks requires establishing flow in the clogged artery as quickly as possible. This might require a heart catheterization where special x-ray pictures of the heart artery can identify the blockage. Once a blockage is found, a steerable coronary guidewire is used to cross the blockage under x-ray imaging. The blockage is opened with an inflatable balloon and the artery is usually treated with a mesh-like stent to maintain it open.

The procedure is typically performed via a leg artery, however our physicians are skilled in performing the procedures through the wrist, thus minimizing discomfort and potential complications.

Our physicians are leaders in treatment of heart attacks. With decades of experience and research dealing with coronary artery disease, HCVA provides the most advanced therapies for the moment of most need.