Emergency Room: Go for Treatment for Heart Attacks
If you feel that you or someone very close to you needs to receive emergency heart treatment, it will be best to be informed on when to visit the emergency room, and what to expect on arrival. It is also very important to know how you should prepare yourself for this visit. At Frontline ER, we recommend taking the following measures.
When Should You Go to the Emergency Room?
For many individuals, it is not clear on when they should seek emergency care. Many know they should contact 911 whenever they encounter a life-threatening situation, e.g., serious trauma, breathing trouble, or loss of consciousness. However, the symptoms associated with a heart attack are not always clear.
This makes it difficult to determine whether one is experiencing a heartburn or a heart crisis. It’s, however, important to remember that it is better to be safe than to experience feelings of regret later on. Therefore, if for any reason you feel that you could be dealing with an emergency, call 911, and request them to dispatch an ambulance to your location.
Emergency services personnel will start to care for you or your next of kin immediately. As they are doing this, they will also notify the Frontline ER personnel to inform them that they are headed back to the facility.
When dealing with a heart attack, you will mainly experience the following symptoms:
- Chest discomfort that feels like squeezing, fullness, or pressure being applied on the left side or center region of your chest. In many cases, this discomfort will either last for a few minutes, go away, and then come back.
- Discomfort and pain that goes past your chest to other regions of your body, e.g., one arm or both of them, jaw, back, stomach, and neck.
- Unexplained shortness of breath. This shortness of breath is in some cases accompanied by chest discomforts, while it lacks in other cases.
- Some of the symptoms listed above may also be accompanied by indigestion, a cold sweat, anxiety, lightheadedness, and nausea.
Always Be Prepared
It is not always possible to know when you may need to make an emergency visit to any of our Frontline ER facilities. It is, therefore, imperative to make sure that you are always prepared. But how do you prepare for a visit to the ER in advance? The following are crucial steps that you need to take to make future visits to the ER easier:
Start by creating a medical file. This file must be updated on a regular basis. The details to be captured in your file will include the following:
- Complete information pertaining to any serious health conditions that you currently have
- Results of all the medical tests that have been performed on you in the past
- A complete list of all your allergies
- A list of herbal supplements, vitamins, and medications that you may be taking at the moment
- The contact details (full names and numbers) of your next of kin, doctors, friends, colleagues or anyone who may need to be contacted in the event of an emergency.
Ensure you keep the file in a place where you can easily find it. Be sure to return it to the same exact location every time you update it. If you think you are having a heart attack, you should never drive yourself to the emergency room. Have someone else take you there.
What to Bring with You to the Emergency Room?
When going to the emergency room for a heart attack treatment, you should bring the following:
- The file that has all your medical details
- Paper and pen to use in documenting the type of treatment that will be provided to your loved one
- Your insurance card
What Should You Expect on Arrival at the Emergency Room?
Frontline ER facilities always respond to the most serious medical conditions first. This means that if you arrive at the facility with symptoms that mirror those of a heart attack, you will be attended to immediately. The doctors will work quickly to confirm the diagnosis, deal with the symptoms, and attend to the problem as well.
The treatment to be administered with be determined by your symptoms. As such, you may receive one or more of the following types of treatments:
- Physical examination
- Cardiac catheterization. This is a procedure that involves inserting a tube into your heart via a blood vessel located in your groin or wrist in a bid to unblock a blocked artery.
- IV fluids
- EKG monitoring. This is done to screen for the presence of abnormal heart rhythms.
- Medications, e.g., aspirin, nitroglycerin and other drugs used to bust clogs.
In addition, you should be prepared to answer all manner of questions that include:
- Your current pain levels
- Lifestyle habits, e.g., use of recreational drugs, and alcohol and tobacco use
- Risk factors
- Current and past health problems
Transfer to the Hospital Room from the ER
You should note that not all people who visit the ER with chest pains get to be admitted. However, if the doctors feel that there is a reasonable chance that the pain may have been caused by a heart attack, or any other chronic condition, chances are that you will be admitted at the facility.
In the initial twenty-four hours, you will be placed in an ICU or CCU (coronary care unit) where skilled personnel will continue to monitor your heart closely. Several blood tests will also be performed. Normally, the doctor will place you under observation for twenty-hours. If you start to stabilize, you can then be transferred to a telemetry floor.