A heart attack occurs when the blood supply to the heart is suddenly blocked, usually by a blood clot:
Lots of people usually recover, but there’s a good chance that the heart may stop, which is called cardiac arrest. It is important for someone having a heart attack to get medical aid quickly, otherwise they could die. Someone with angina may experience chest pain, which may ease when they take their medication and rest. If the pain persists, you must assume it is a heart attack. If you think someone is having a heart attack, the four things to look for are the four P’s -pain in the chest, which will move to the jaw and down one arm, pale skin, perspiration, pulse – rapid and weak. If you do come across someone with these symptoms, please phone for an ambulance and say that they are having a heart attack. Once you’ve called for an ambulance, help the casualty into a seated position, ideally on the floor with their back and knees supported. If they’re over 16 and are able to take aspirin, give them one 300mg tablet and let them chew it slowly. While you’re waiting for the ambulance to arrive, do remember they may develop a condition called shock, which is life threatening. Keep checking their levels of response, breathing and pulse. If they do go unconscious, remember, do your primary survey. So remember the four P’s, call for an ambulance, get them into a comfortable position, give them an aspirin, and monitor them until help arrives. And that’s how you deal with a heart attack.