Heart attack symptoms: Is your toothache a sign of the deadly condition?

Fitness & Health:

A blocked coronary artery – blood vessels that supply the heart muscle with blood and oxygen – is the culprit behind a deadly heart attack. Could toothache be a warning sign of the condition?

According to Medicine Net, toothache is most certainly an indicator for a heart attack.

Other bizarre signs may include arm pain, upper back pain, general malaise and vomiting.

The most common heart attack sensation is pain, fullness and/or squeezing in the chest, and the pain can radiate to the jaw or other body parts.

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When the heart is starved of blood and oxygen, the heart muscle becomes injured – triggering chest pain and pressure.

If blood flow isn’t restored to the heart muscle within 20 to 40 minutes, irreversible death of the heart muscle will begin.

The heart muscle continues to die for six to eight hours, when the heart muscle is then replaced by scar tissue.

Bear in mind that heart attacks producing no symptoms (or mild symptoms) can be just as life-threatening as heart attacks that cause severe chest pain.

READ MORE: The ‘earliest warning’ sign of a heart attack may involve an activity – what to look for

Risk factors for a heart attack include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, use of tobacco, diabetes, and a family history of coronary heart disease.

High cholesterol can lead to atheroscleorosis, whereby cholesterol plaque harden the arterial walls and narrow the blood passageway.

Arteries narrowed by this process (atheroscleorosis) can’t deliver enough blood to maintain the normal function of the parts of the body they supply.

This can begin in someone’s teenage years, with health problems not becoming apparent into later in adulthood.

Coronary atherosclerosis – known as coronary heart diseases – affects the heart muscle.

Coronary heart diseases include heart attacks, angina, abnormal heart rhythms and heart failure.

Diagnosing a heart attack

Diagnosis can become problematic when there isn’t chest pain to report, as the necessary tests may be overlooked.

One required test is an electrocardiogram (ECG) which records the electrical activity of the heart.

Abnormalities in the electrical activity of the heart usually occurs with heart attacks.

An ECG can identify areas of the heart muscle deprived of oxygen and any scar tissue.

Blood tests may also be done to diagnose a heart attack, as dying heart muscles release cardiac enzymes into the bloodstream.

These cardiac enzymes are know as “creatine phosphokinase (CPK), special sub-fractions of CPK (specifically, the MB fraction of CPK), and troponin”.


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