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myocardial infarction
 
A heart attack (also known as a myocardial infarction) is the death of heart muscle from the sudden blockage of a coronary artery by a blood clot. Coronary arteries are blood vessels that supply the heart muscle with blood and oxygen. Blockage of a coronary artery deprives the heart muscle of blood and oxygen, causing injury to the heart muscle. Injury to the heart muscle causes chest pain and chest pressure sensation. If blood flow is not restored to the heart muscle within 20 to 40 minutes, irreversible death of the heart muscle will begin to occur. Muscle continues to die for several hours, and the dead heart muscle is eventually replaced by scar tissue.
 
Symptoms
Symptoms may include:
 
Causes
A cause is atherosclerosis - a gradual process by which cholesterol is deposited in the walls of arteries. Cholesterol collection causes hardening of the arterial walls and narrowing of the inner channel of the artery. Arteries that are narrowed by atherosclerosis cannot deliver enough blood to maintain normal function of the parts of the body they supply.

 
Treatments
Treatment may include:
  • medications to prevent formation and growth of blood clots in the arteries
  • coronary angiography
  • supplemental oxygen
  • other medications
  • hospitalization
Specialties
  •  
  • cardiology

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