In heart attack it is common that the pain is either very intense or mild. Its' intensity can veary a lot from case to case. One specific sign of a myocardial infarction is, as in the angina pain, the growth in intensity during the first minutes. The site of pain is usually behind the breastboneand very often it radiates in the jaw, neck, left shoulder or left arm.. At the moment when the pain occur, the most informative and practical diagnosis method would be an ECG (Electrocardiogram). Emergency doctors can easily distinguish a heart attack on ECG, as it has a particular line.
The cause of pain in heart attack
It is known from those who survive a heart attack that sometimes it is a very painful and unpleasant experience. Myocardial infarction is the death of the myocardium (heart muscle). It is casued by the absence of blood flow to the heart muscle. As a sign that the ischemia is already started and that the muscle is dying servse the severe pain.
In some cases the pain may be lasting for many hours, as the ischemia continues. When the factor that was blocking the normal blood flow in coronary arteries was successfully removed, and the blood flux was reestablished, the pain usually disappears suddenly. The heart attack pain is composed of three elements, as specialists say: the pain from the heart itself, the pain from the entire organism response to the changes that take place in the heart and the psychological factor - a fear of imminent death, known also as "angor animi".
In up to 20% of cases or even more, the heart attacks can be painless. As pain in the heart is a response of the nervous terminations to the stimuli, in cases when the nervous sensitivity is affected, the pain may not be felt so acute. This usually happens in elderly persons, or in diabetics, whose nervous sensors not only in the heart but all over the organism are affected and the pain sensation may be absent or diminished.
Heart Attack pains' treatment
As you already may know, staying at home without calling an emergency service is highly dangerous and can threat your life. It is a good idea to have the emergency numbers of the countries you lpan to visti, if you are a frequent traveller and to have a cellphone by hand.
If you are at home and have heart pains that you think could be due to a cardiac impairement, the first thing you can do is to lie down, in horizontal position. Concentrate to your breath, keep it rhythmical, call for help as soon as possible and by any means, take an aspirin if you are not allergic to it. The pain in heart attack is a severe event, and the medications of choice to cut the pain remain narcotics. Morphine is gien in most of cases to help both cut the pains and calm the emotional stress. Also, nitroglycerine remains a drug that continues to be used, you can take a nitro at home while you wait for the ambulance, but in hospital conditions, they will administer it intravenously as the effect is faster.