Scary Fact: 50% of People Who Have a Heart Attack Are Not Aware of It

Many people go to the emergency room with the short of breath and tiredness, and don’t even know they have a heart attack.

A study released on Monday showed that about 45% percent of heart attacks in the United State goes unnoticed. Yes, there are classic symptoms like arm and chest pain, and the damage is just about the same.

“The outcome of a silent heart attack is as bad as a heart attack that is recognized while it is happening,” said Dr. Elsayed Soliman of Wake Forest Baptist Medical center, the scientist who led the study.

“And because patients don’t know they have had a silent heart attack; they may not receive the treatment they need to prevent another one.”

This study went through 9,500 middle-aged people medical records who took the part in a heart disease risk study. And during 9 years of this study, 317 of them had “silent” heart attacks, while 386 of them noticed them immediately.

Even if the heart attack goes without notice, it can be detected later with an electrocardiogram (EKG).

“People who have these so-called silent heart attacks are more likely to have non-specific and subtle symptoms, such as indigestion or a case of the flu, or they may think that they strained a muscle in their chest or their upper back,” said Dr. Deborah Ekery, a cardiologist at Heart Hospital of Austin.

“Some folks have prolonged and excessive fatigue that is unexplained. Those are some of the less specific symptoms for a heart attack, but ones that people may ignore or attribute to something else.”

What are Heart Attacks?

It doesn’t matter if they are silent or you notice them right away, heart attacks are very dangerous. They are caused when something blocks blood flow to the heart and that damages muscles of the heart. Every heart attack leaves a scar on this organ since damaged tissue is replaced with stiffer scar tissue.

The important thing to know it that heart attacks have to be treated aggressively, just because of the fact that people who had them have three times more chances to die of heart disease and about 34% more chances to die from other cause.

This disease is more common in men than woman.

“Our study also suggests that blacks may fare worse than whites, but the number of blacks may have      been too small to say that with certainty” said Dr Soliman

Treatment for Heart Attack Patients

Treatment includes lowering cholesterol levels, lowering blood pressure, eating a proper diet, exercise, encouraging smokers to quit and switching to a healthier lifestyle. There are even some benefits from taking low-dose of aspirin every day with patients that may need blood thinners.

There are many reasons why heart attacks occur, but the main are a lack of exercise, poor diet, salty and sweet food, diabetes and obesity. Experts are recommending that people should eat fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to preserve proper heart function.