Thursday, June 25, 2009

What Part of Heart Attack Don't You Understand?

Too often I have patients who show up to the office with reports of symptoms that have been occurring over several days, weeks, months, and even years. With the amount of medical information that is blasted over the television and on the internet, it still is amazing how much patients still do not understand about certain medical conditions.

Patient X shows up to the office and reports having chest pain, sweating, nausea, pain radiating down the left arm but didn't think that it was REALLY a heart attack and just wanted to come see me to make sure. The pain had stopped by this time.

I asked the patient why they didn't call 911 during this episode. "I thought it would just go away."

Hmmmm. Yep. You almost "just went away yourself!" Now go to the hospital and get your enzymes checked to see if you are finished with your heart attack and get a cardiac cath preferably by ambulance from here.

"Oh I can't go right now. I have too many things to do!"

Are you too busy to die? What part of having a heart attack don't you understand?