Heart Attack Vs Cardiac Arrest: Tips To Optimal Heart Health

Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the entire world. This highlights how important it is to know its symptoms and maintain heart health. The terms “heart attacks” and “cardiac arrest” are often misunderstood. Both heart attacks and cardiac arrests are serious medical conditions, but their causes, symptoms, as well as treatments differ. In this post, we’ll explore the differences between heart attacks and cardiac arrest, as well providing tips for optimal health. A Denver heart doctor is also a great resource for prevention and treatment.

Understanding Heart Attack

Myocardial ischemia, or heart attack, is caused when the blood supply to a certain part of the heart muscle becomes blocked. This happens most often by a large blood clot. This blockage causes the heart muscle to be deprived of oxygen and nutrients. Damage or death can result. Heart attacks are mostly caused by coronary artery disorders. They involve the narrowing and blocking of the coronary arches due to the accumulation of plaque. This plaque is made up of calcium, calcium phosphate, and cholesterol.

The symptoms of an heart attack can be varied but usually include the:

  • Pain in the chest, often described as a feeling of pressure, squeezing, and tightness
  • Pain or discomfort on the arms, neck, jaw, back, or shoulders
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea, vomiting or feeling lightheaded
  • Cold sweat

Understanding Cardiac Reaction

The abrupt stopping of the heart results in cardiac arrest. This disrupts blood flow to brain and other vital tissues. It can lead to loss in consciousness, breathing cessation, and even death if untreated. The cause of cardiac arrest, as opposed to a heart attack which is caused by a blockage within the coronary vessels, is an electrical malfunction that leads to ventricular fibrillation, an irregular heartbeat.

These symptoms can occur in cardiac arrest:

  • Sudden loss of responsiveness
  • Absences in pulse
  • Absences of breathing
  • Unconsciousness

Cardiac arrest requires immediate medical intervention to restore normal rhythm and circulation. CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and automated external defibrillation (AED), are critical interventions that bystanders may perform until emergency services arrive. AEDs increase the likelihood of survival significantly in cardiac arrest cases.

Tips For Optimal Health Heart

Prevention is essential to heart health. Adopting heart-healthy habits and seeking medical care regularly can help individuals reduce their risk for heart disease and its complications. These tips will help you to maintain optimal cardiovascular health.

  1. Stay Healthy: Try to complete at least 150 minute of moderate-intensity, aerobic exercise each week. Or 75 minutes intense aerobic exercise. And do some muscle-strengthening on two or three days per weeks.
  2. Give up smoking: If this is you, then seek help to quit. Avoid exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke and other toxic environmental substances.
  3. Limiting alcohol: Alcohol should be consumed in moderation if you choose to drink it at all. Women can have up to a drink a week, and men can have up to two.
  4. Monitor Blood pressure: Regularly monitor your bloodpressure and follow recommended guidelines to maintain healthy bloodpressure levels. Hypertension, or high blood-pressure, is one of the major causes of heart disease.
  5. Control Cholesterol: Monitor levels of cholesterol, work with your doctor to make lifestyle changes, and if necessary, use medication therapy.
  6. Control Diabetes If diabetic, work closely with a healthcare professional to manage blood glucose levels through medication. Diet, exercise, and regular monitoring are all important.
  7. Get Regular Medical Attention: Book regular checkups with Denver heart doctors or primary care physicians for preventive screenings. They can also help you assess your risk and manage any underlying medical conditions.


Knowing the difference is critical to recognizing these medical emergency situations and responding appropriately. By adopting heart health lifestyle habits and by seeking regular medical care, individuals can reduce their risks of heart disease. Consulting a Denver-based heart doctor will provide personalized guidance to help maintain heart health.