Myocardial Infarction – Cardiovascular System Example

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"Myocardial Infarction " is a perfect example of a paper on the cardiovascular system. Myocardial infarction or a heart attack transpires whenever the heart muscle receives insufficient oxygen or undergoes damage. Several of the cardiac problems are the outcomes of blockages in the arteries and the formation of clots in the blood. There is considerable difficulty in differentiating between heartburn and a heart attack (Wilson). In general, a heart attack is characterized by pain, tightness, or discomfort in the chest. Moreover, it has been noticed that sweating, nausea, and vomiting are accompanied by intense pressure in the chest.

During a heart attack, the afflicted individual could experience an intense and radiating pain that extends from the left arm to the chest. Also, there could be difficulty in breathing that lasts for a few minutes. Any person with these symptoms should be transported to the emergency room of a hospital (Wilson). Some of the better-known means of diminishing the risk of a heart attack are; cessation of smoking; consuming a healthy diet that is free of fatty foods, excess salt, and red meat; taking adequate measures to control diabetes and high blood pressure; walking for 30 minutes a day; preventing obesity; leading a healthy and fruitful life; performing regular relaxation and breathing exercises; undergoing cardiac examination regularly; practicing meditation, and consuming foods that contain sufficient amounts of antioxidants (Wilson). In the industrialized countries, coronary heart disease (CHD) exacts the maximum toll on human life.

The changing lifestyle patterns across the world could result in an extension of CHD related mortality to the other areas of our planet. The past score of years has been witness to a dramatic change in the treatment of myocardial infarction (MI).

The extant medical mediations in this area now include invasive interventions and intensive pharmacological treatment (Agewall 17). This improved treatment for MI has resulted in a drastic reduction in in-hospital mortality rates. Besides, the dangers associated with smoking are now well established. Furthermore, it has been conclusively proved that the cessation of smoking has the outcome of a rapid reduction in the risk of undergoing subsequent CHD events. This is concerning patients with established cardiovascular disease (Agewall 17). Cessation of smoking has been seen to reduce the level of risk, among those who had quit smoking for 2 to 3 years, to that of patients with CHD who had never smoked.

Cessation of smoking among smoking patients with CHD is the best preventive measure after an MI (Agewall 17). Cardiovascular health is maintained optimally, due to the partaking of a well – planned and proper diet. One study, in particular, has established that a 30% reduction in risk could be envisaged, by the regular consumption of fruits and vegetables. Another major promoter of cardiovascular health is regular exercise.

This has the outcome of enhancing exercise capacity while reducing myocardial oxygen demand. The results of these are fewer symptoms of CHD and lower mortality rates (Agewall 18). Among the females of the US, it has been declared by the American Heart Association that 33% succumb to heart disease. There is a steady increase in mortality among women; whereas, the corresponding rate for men has been seen to decrease. A large number of these deaths result from coronary heart disease (Cheek, Jensen, and Smith 4). This includes acute ischemic heart disease, atherosclerosis, angina pectoris, and myocardial infarction; stroke, and high blood pressure.

The most reliable indicators of risk of cardiovascular disease among females are provided by family history, diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, obesity, physical inactivity, cigarette smoking, and postmenopausal status (Cheek, Jensen and Smith 4). Although, certain risk factors are not amenable to change, such as postmenopausal status or family history; it is well within a woman’ s capacity to properly address risk factors like smoking, lack of exercise, and obesity. Heart attacks prove to be the cause of death in several ailments.

For instance, the leading cause of death in diabetes has been attributed to heart attacks. To circumvent heart attacks, it is imperative to undergo regular medical examinations, wherein the blood pressure is properly measured. Moreover, the cholesterol of the patient is to be measured at least once a year (Fentress 40). Diabetes results in high LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, in conjunction with low HDL cholesterol. It has been estimated that controlling cholesterol can reduce the risk of a heart attack by 20 to 50%. An LDL level that is less than 100mg/dl can be achieved by partaking in a healthy diet, indulging in regular physical activity, and imbibing the necessary medication.

These beneficial measures can reduce the triglycerides level to less than 150mg/dl, whilst enhancing HDL levels above 40mg/dl in the case of males and 50mg/dl for females (Fentress 40). Furthermore, statin class pills, which have been proved to reduce the risk of heart attacks, are consumed by patients with diabetes who are 40 years or older. Also, considerable benefits have been noticed in consuming aspirin daily.

The chief benefit of taking aspirin is that it improves the flow of blood (Fentress 40). Moreover, persons who smoke have to completely cease from this dangerous activity. A person who is overweight places undue strain on the heart; however, this can be prevented by undertaking regular physical activity. Moreover, physical activity has the added benefit of reducing stress, which constitutes an important facet of heart disease. It has been suggested that moderately intense physical exercise for between half an hour to an hour has to be undertaken on most days of the week for the best benefits (Mayo Clinic Staff). However, exercise for even shorter periods provides health benefits, especially for the heart.

In this regard, it has been recommended that the total exercise can be divided into manageable sections. The aim is to engage in physical activity, whether it be gardening, housekeeping, or taking the stairs (Mayo Clinic Staff). Although it is not necessary to engage in strenuous exercise, enhancing the duration, frequency, and intensity of physical activity leads to improved health benefits.


Agewall, Stefan. "Some Aspects of Preventing Coronary Heart Disease." Angiology 63.1 (2012): 17 – 23. Print.

Cheek, Dennis, Lindsey Jensen, and Hollie McGehee Smith. "Preventing and treating: Heart disease in women." Nurse Practitioner (Nov 2004): 4 – 8. Print.

Fentress, Debbie. "Preventing Complications." Diabetes Forecast 60.3 (2007): 39 – 41. Print.

Mayo Clinic Staff. 5 medication-free strategies to help prevent heart disease. 12 January 2011. Web. 15 June 2012. .

Wilson, Paul. 10 Ways to Avoid a Heart Attack. 2012. Web. 15 June 2012. .

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