Myocardial Infarction

Topics: Myocardial infarction / Pages: 13 (3217 words) / Published: Jun 27th, 2013
Myocardial infarction (MI) or acute myocardial infarction (AMI), commonly known as a heart attack, is the interruption of blood supply to part of the heart, causing heart cells to die. This is most commonly due to occlusion (blockage) of a coronary artery following the rupture of a vulnerable atherosclerotic plaque, which is an unstable collection of lipids (fatty acids) and white blood cells (especially macrophages) in the wall of an artery. The resulting ischemia (restriction in blood supply) and oxygen shortage, if left untreated for a sufficient period of time, can cause damage or death (infarction) of heart muscle tissue (myocardium).
Cause: It is usually caused by reduced blood flow in the coronary artery.
Conditions that may lead to Myocardial Infarction:
1. Atherosclerosis
2. Coronary Thrombosis or embolism
3. Coronary Vasospasm
4. Shock
5. Direct Trauma
6. Acute severe infection, such as pneumonia, can trigger myocardial infarction. A more controversial link is that between Chlamydophila pneumoniae infection and atherosclerosis. While this intracellular organism has been demonstrated in atherosclerotic plaques, evidence is inconclusive as to whether it can be considered a causative factor. Treatment with antibiotics in patients with proven atherosclerosis has not demonstrated a decreased risk of heart attacks or other coronary vascular diseases
Risk Factors:
1. Race - Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality among African American, Hispanic, and white populations in the United States.
2. Family History – family history of ischemic heart disease (IHD)
3. Age - Men acquire an independent risk factor at age 45, Women acquire an independent risk factor at age 55; in addition individuals acquire another independent risk factor if they have a first-degree male relative (brother, father) who suffered a coronary vascular event at or before age 55. Another independent risk factor is acquired if one

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