As per the American Heart Association, more than one million people end up having heart attacks each year, and out of them half will succumb to the attack, while others will be left with some permanent disability. Therefore, it is important to find out as much as possible about the symptoms of heart attack and what can be done when a person is having one. This could end up saving the person's life.
A heart attack takes place when the tissue of the heart is not getting enough of oxygen. The heart needs adequate amounts of oxygen in order to work properly. It is the coronary arteries that supply oxygen-rich blood to the heart. However, when the arteries become narrow due to plaque formation or when they get blocked because of the build up of plaque, the blood supply to the heart tissue is disrupted. When this happens, in the affected region of the heart, the cells begin to die. It is then when a heart take takes place. The damaged sustained by the heart depends on how many cells have been affected and the how long the heart attack lasted before treatment was given.
Unfortunately, the symptoms of a heart attack are different for each person as well as for the two genders. However, some of the common symptoms seen are pain in the chest, feeling of heaviness in the chest, pain in the back, jaw, neck or arm, nausea, vomiting, cold sweat, dizziness and shortness of breath. In women, the pain in the chest is not experienced generally.
A heart attack can last for a minimum of 15 to 20 minutes in some people, while in others it can go on for hours together. Hence, how long does a heart attack last is a difficult question to answer as the intensity and severity of the attack varies from one person to the next, and so does the duration of the attack.
Nonetheless, if a person thinks he or she is having a heart attack, they should immediately rush to the emergency room to seek treatment.
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