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Useful Notes on “Angina Pectoris” and “Acute Myocardial Infarction”

This may be associated with exertion, emotion, exposure to cold or overeating.

First Aid:

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(i) Give him complete bed rest.

(ii) Whenever there is pain keep a tablet of nitroglycerin under his tongue. This will help to dilate the coronary arteries and improve the blood supply.

(iii) Ask the patient not to indulge in laborious work.

(iv) Overweight should be reduced.

(v) In severe cases his bed room should be on the ground floor.

(vi) If coronary arteries are blocked, bypass surgery may be suggested.

(2) Acute Myocardial Infarction (Heart Attack):

Acute myocardial infarction is also known as heart attack. It is one of the greatest and most important medical emergencies which should be treated promptly otherwise life of the patient may be in danger.

In this disease there is damage or death of a part of heart muscles or due to deposition of cholesterol in coronary vessels due to which there is interruption of blood supply to that area of the heart. Myocardial infarction is usually confined to the left ventricle.

Acute myocardial infarction generally occurs to middle-aged and obese persons; persons who take diet rich in fats and cholesterol, habitual drinkers and chronic smokers. The incidence of heart attack is quite high in males as compared to females.

At the time of heart attack there is severe pain in the chest which is radiating to the medial side of the left arm. It usually persists for several hours. There is fall in blood pressure and also shock. The respiration is fast and there is profuse perspiration. Sometimes patient may have vomiting and he feels restless.

First Aid Treatment:

(i) Give him complete bed rest.

(ii) Give a sublingual tablet of sorbitrate which will dilate the coronary vessels and relieve pain.

(iii) Loosen clothing’s of the patient and reassure him.

(iv) Give an injection of morphine or pethidine to relieve pain.

(v) If oxygen is available, administer it.

(vi) If cardio active drugs e.g. digoxin, lidocaine etc. are available, administer them immediately.

(vii) Arrange to shift the patient to the hospital emergency room as early as possible.

(viii) Do not allow the patient to walk to the emergency room but carry him on a stretcher or wheel chair.

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