Twenty-four hours before it happens… Symptoms warning of a heart attack
The study suggests that about 50% of patients who experienced a sudden cardiac arrest may have noticeable warning symptoms 24 hours before the event. These symptoms could help individuals identify the risk of a sudden cardiac arrest before it occurs. The study also noted differences in warning symptoms between genders, with shortness of breath being the most prominent symptom in women and severe chest pain in men. Other symptoms included palpitations, seizure-like activity, and flu-like symptoms.
Sudden cardiac arrest is a life-threatening condition; when it occurs outside of hospitals, it has a very high mortality rate. Early intervention is crucial to prevent imminent death in such cases. Identifying warning symptoms and seeking medical help promptly can be critical to improving outcomes for those at risk of sudden cardiac arrest.
The research analyzed data from two community-based studies, the Prediction of Sudden Death in Multi-Ethnic Communities (Presto) Study and the Oregon Sudden Unexpected Death Study (SUDs). These studies assessed the prevalence of individual symptoms and combinations of symptoms before sudden cardiac arrest incidents. They compared them to control groups that sought emergency medical care for other reasons.
The results from these studies suggest that recognizing and acting upon warning symptoms could lead to early intervention and potentially prevent sudden cardiac arrest. This research may serve as a foundation for further studies that aim to improve prediction and prevention strategies for this life-threatening condition.