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Can you recognize a Heart Attack aka MI?

Discussion in 'Survival Medicine' started by HK_User, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey Site Supporter

    Having just experienced this for a 2nd time in my life I thought it important to ask other Monkeys this life saving question.

    For us it happened rather quickly while I was asleep.

    All the signs were present, I moved slowly to dress and took an aspirin, woke the wife and said "I'm having a Heart Attack". In moments we were on the way to a Hospital where my Cardiologist is the director of the Cath. Lab.

    The rest is history and I have some new parts,again.

    Observations and suggestions please.
  2. oldawg

    oldawg Monkey+++

    Glad you made it through.
  3. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Pure water, real food, moderate sunlight exposure on the skin, steady and routine sleep, earnest meditation, exercise, and staying single. But, having lived this very lifestyle, I think perhaps it wouldn't be all that bad to trade it for a little fun and torment. After all, you haven't really lived at all if you didn't break any rules. It is good that you recognized the symptoms early enough. I am too stubborn, and would probably grin and bear it until my chest exploded, then welcome the beyond and start experiencing the next dream.
  4. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Monkey

    Glad you're still with us and that it woke you up. Although going in your sleep would not be a bad way to go.

    Moderation in everything....
    HK_User and Tully Mars like this.
  5. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Glad you made it as well.

    As to would I recognize the signs? Perhaps not. I've had chest pains my whole life. They get me worried, and the docs tell me it's muscles in the chest wall, or growing pains, nothing to get worked up about.
    Had me worried enough a few times to learn to control a few things to some extent. I can raise or lower my hand temp at will, raise and lower my pulse for short intervals as needed. (Fascinates the medical staff).
    My grandfather died of a massive heart attack.(dad's side). Mom's dad died in a car wreck.
    The last time I was given a physical, they took my pulse several times, and had me paranoid. (They wouldn't tell me anything).
    Finally I got pissed and gathered my clothes to leave, when the doc said " your pulse is less than your age."...yeah? So what? "That's unusual. It means either you need a pace maker, or you have a very efficient heart, a trained athlete's heart. The blood work rules out the pacemaker. But yeah, you had us a bit worried." (They had taken my BP, pulse, blood oxy several times. And I HAD THEM WORRIED?)
    So, there is a history of death by heart attack in the family, but would I recognize it if it happened to me? I don't know.
    HK_User likes this.
  6. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    this made me laugh, @broker, preaching clean living and then taking it back thinking a little excitement and torment would be good. Did you take your meds today? your schizophrenia is coming back ;)

    @HK_User So glad you are still here. What signs did you have? If you dont mind sharing for other people. I have an arrhythmic heart beat and sometimes I have to smack myself in the chest to get it back on beat. It looks stupid but it is what it is.

    If I remember correctly the signs can be different for women.
    Heart Attack Signs in Women
    1. Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.
    2. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
    3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
    4. Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
    5. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

    HK_User and Tully Mars like this.
  7. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey Site Supporter

    Symptoms were of the standard radiating pain from the left side of the back with pain and numbness in the left arm.

    As I was completing the inventory of my body I noted a lessening of pain as I rolled onto my right side.

    On the way to the Hosp. the pain stayed steady as a moderate discomfort in the left upper quadrant of my back.

    Morphine took care of the pain when I hit the ER.

    But then everyone is different, one of the reasons to do the 911 dance if in doubt.

    Blood enzyme test over the next 12 hours was proof positive of a MI and thus heart muscle damage.

    My indicators came from the fact that I was asleep and thus the body was not yet starved for blood or oxygen, but the heart's blood vessels were blocked so the heart was in the process of going belly up and the pain was from the heart's impending death.

    Kinda puts it right up there with an important event.
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2015
  8. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    Glad you are a tough and smart monkey and made it @HK_User.
    HK_User likes this.
  9. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey Site Supporter+

    Glad you're all right HK, I really am.
    A few years back I thought I was having a heart attack. All the major symptoms. The hospital couldn't run all the proper tests so I was transferred to Minot. @Sassenach hopped on a plane and they did the angio thing the next day. It ended up being my gall bladder.
    I keep a bottle of Nitro tabs in my gear.
    HK_User and Ganado like this.
  10. vonslob

    vonslob Monkey++

    @HK_User best wishes and prayers for a speedy recovery.
  11. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey Site Supporter

    I appreciate the well wishing from all, now just don't forget, there is no reason to ignore any sign that may indicate a HEART ATTACK.

    To prove this I'll just say my first 3 trips to the ER in 2000 were met with "enzyme test say no heart attack".

    But a trip to a Cardiologist proved I was a time bomb.

    Shortly after my meeting with the Cardiologist I had open heart surgery with a Mitral Valve repair and a double bypass and only because my body and my mind plus Mil experience said something was wrong no matter the first 3 test results.

    Dont, Witch Doctor 01, Ganado and 4 others like this.
  12. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Glad you made it in time and that you know the drill. Its wise to be in tune to your body and what its trying to tell you.
    Ganado and HK_User like this.
  13. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey Site Supporter

    Let me add my own congratulations on surviving that one.. Almost lost my Dad a few years back to a heart attack. Fortunately there was a nurse there that recognized the sign and got him to a hospital.. Be safe !
    HK_User and Ganado like this.
  14. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey Site Supporter

    Ganado likes this.
  15. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey Site Supporter

    When the Doc sent me home I ask him what my schedule should be.
    His reply, "By Saturday you can resume your normal routines."

    I looked at him in wonder! Then my wife filled in the blanks, "He doesn't know how hard or how much you work on the Ranch."

    A short discussion later and he concluded that maybe I oughta wait a week longer!

    And that was how it worked work.

    Still a bit weak but I was outside yesterday slinging cow cake over the fence to two small herds.

    Thanks to neighbors and family the cattle were hayed and taken car of during my two weeks of outage. Maintained in smaller pastures so I could check on them and their Hay Rings during my daily walks, all went well.

    No pains and ready for my next Office meeting with the Doc.

    Thanks all.

  16. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    I'm glad you are too ornrey to die ;) thanks for the update HK. Glad you are back in commission and taking care 9f yourself
  17. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Moderator Moderator Site Supporter++

    My co-worker held Thanksgiving Dinner and one of his guests had a heart attack. The guest kept saying I am fine. Don't ignore the symptoms.

    Ganado likes this.
  18. Pax Mentis

    Pax Mentis Philosopher King Site Supporter

    Any time you have chest pain that radiates down the left arm, into the jaw or is accompanied by tightness and a difficulty breathing, dizziness or nausea, don't chance that it is just the same old chest pain. Relax, take an aspirin and call 911. The pain varies some with different people but those are pretty sure signs...and it is far better to err on the side of caution. Erring in the other direction frequently leaves you dead and is sure to cause permanent damage.

    I have had 6 of them now (I'm going for a record) with 28% ischemic (basically dead) heart muscle and I can tell you that puts a real cramp in your lifestyle. The sooner you are under care, and especially in a cath lab, the less likely dead muscle is. My first went on for 3 days before I finally called a nurse to see if there might really be a problem. Her response I will never forget...very calmly she said "I want you to hang up the phone now and then call 911...have (my wife) get you an aspirin and water, but don't do anything until the ambulance arrives".

    The classic pain has been pretty aptly described as an elephant sitting on your chest chewing on your left upper arm...but not everyone gets that. Be glad you are a man...many women get no pain at all, only dizziness, nausea and sweats, which is why a high number of them don't survive their first.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2015
  19. Living Tranquil

    Living Tranquil Monkey Site Supporter+

    Should you ever feel your heart rate is high or should you think you may be having a heart attack and know you have a distance to get to an ED or Ambulance ride. Coughing slows your heart rate. Not tiny coughs a few good cough's will slow your heart rate. Should you need to lay down, lay on your left side this too will slow your heart rate. Stay awake and calm until help arrives. If you live in a cold climate taking a aspirin a day would help thin your blood. Helpful hints: Water should be the first thing you have in the mornings (before coffee) ( this would be a good time to take that aspirin).
    HK_User, Ganado and Motomom34 like this.
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