Hello, and welcome. My name is ________, and I’m a volunteer with the American Heart Association.
Today I’m going to cover these five points. (Motion to screen where learning objectives are displayed)
David’s not alone by any means. Here are some statistics that show how widespread and serious heart and blood vessel diseases are. Cardiovascular diseases are heart and blood vessel diseases. They include heart attack, cardiac arrest and stroke. Other cardiovascular diseases include high blood pressure, heart failure and congenital heart defects. We’ll focus on heart attack and cardiac arrest today. To understand events like heart attack and cardiac arrest, you first need to know how the heart works. Let’s talk about that now.
The heart pumps blood to all parts of the body. It brings oxygen and nutrients to the body’s cells. The heart muscle gets the oxygenated blood it needs from the coronary arteries, which wrap around the outside of the heart. The heart pumps because its natural pacemaker, called the sinus node, sends an electrical signal that goes from the top of the heart to the bottom. The pacemaker works like a battery, and the electrical impulses flow down paths that act like wires. Electrical impulses make the heart contract, which pumps out the blood. You need a pumping heart to stay alive. Without oxygen, cells start to die. A person can only live a few minutes without oxygen before irreversible brain injury and death occur.
Heart and blood vessel problems develop over time. Plaque is a deposit of cells, fat and cholesterol that can build up in artery walls. These fatty buildups can mean that less blood flows to the heart. This can cause chest pain called angina pectoris. If the plaque splits open, a clot can form and narrow or close part of the artery. Then part of the heart doesn’t get the blood it needs and starts to die. This is a heart attack -- and it’s an emergency.
A heart attack can cause the electrical signals from the pacemaker to go haywire, or the electrical system can go crazy on its own. When this happens, the signals often come too fast, and the heart’s lower chambers start quivering instead of beating and can’t pump blood. This is called ventricular fibrillation. You may know it as cardiac arrest, and it’s an emergency. Let me talk first about heart attack, then I’ll talk about cardiac arrest.
Many people expect a heart attack to be sudden and intense, a crushing chest pain that knocks them to the floor. But often heart attacks begin with vague symptoms that slowly intensify. The pain or discomfort can be relatively mild, and the symptoms may come and go. Because of this, many people aren’t sure if they’re having a heart attack or resist believing it, so they wait. They may think their symptoms are due to another disease or condition. Others are afraid of causing a scene or are afraid of how embarrassed they’d be if it was a false alarm. Still others don’t realize the urgent need to get to a hospital fast. A final mistake that people make is not knowing to call 9-1-1 … or trying to go to the hospital themselves rather than calling 9-1-1. Don’t you make these mistakes.
Saving the life of a cardiac arrest victim requires a four-step process called the chain of survival. These are the steps. Early access means that people recognize a cardiovascular emergency and immediately call 9-1-1. Early CPR means CPR is given quickly and properly when it’s needed. The mouth-to-mouth breathing and chest compressions keep blood and oxygen circulating, which buys time until defibrillation can occur. Early defibrillation means having immediate access to an automated external defibrillator. This allows trained rescuers to shock a victim’s heart so it can resume a normal rhythm. Early advanced care means having qualified paramedics with up-to-date Advanced Cardiac Life Support training. They can stabilize patients.
Cardiac arrest is an extreme emergency. Every second counts! With each minute that passes, a victim’s chances of survival drop by 7 to 10 percent. That’s why it’s so important to respond promptly and properly. A moment ago I showed a slide that said that only 5 percent of cardiac arrest victims survived. Experts believe that with a good chain of survival in place, we could save not 5 percent, but 20 percent of victims or more. That’s thousands of lives a year. If you’ve never taken a CPR course, I urge you to do so. If you’ve taken one but it’s been more than two years ago, take one to refresh your skills. The American Heart Association offers CPR courses, including some that teach you how to use an AED. See the handout for information on our courses. Speaker: Include handout on local course offerings and the numbers to call to sign up.
As you can see, people in every racial and ethnic group are victims. African Americans — both men and women — are at particularly high risk.
These are the risk factors that you can control. By changing your lifestyle, you may be able to eliminate or reduce them. Other factors not shown here — but that may also contribute to risk — are drinking too much alcohol, drug abuse and stress. Let’s look at each of these listed risk factors individually.
If you want to learn more about heart disease, stroke, risk factors or other cardiovascular information, please call our Call Center or visit our Web site. We have lots of information to help you find out what you want to know.
That’s the end of my presentation. If you have questions, I’d be glad to answer them. Thank you all for your time.
Cuando un médico habla sobre los niveles de presión arterial, se refiere a dos cifras. El primer número, o el mayor, se refiere a la presión en las arterias cuando late el corazón (sistólica). El segundo número, o el menor, se refiere a la presión en las arterias entre latidos del corazón (diastólica).
Por lo general, NO HAY síntomas. Muchas personas la tienen, pero no lo sabe. Por eso, la presión arterial se llama “el asesino silencioso”. Y por eso, es importante medirse la presión arterial regularmente.
La hipertensi ó n causa que el corazón se esfuerce más de lo normal para poder bombear sangre a todos los tejidos del organismo. Esto incrementa la probabilidad de que se da ñen las arterias o el corazón.