The Main Differences between a Heart Attack, Cardiac Arrest, and Stroke
Although they don’t even have the same name, a lot of people tend to think that a heart attack, a cardiac arrest, and a stroke are one and the same health issue. However, they have different symptoms, severity, and background.
Moreover, knowing the difference between these three health problems is crucial because you might find yourself in a situation where a person experiences some of these health problems and may need to help as much as you can. In order to do that, you need to recognize the symptoms.
Let’s take a look at the 3 health problems separately:
- Heart attack-When a person’s blood flow is blocked or if it lacks oxygen, the blood fails to get to the heart muscle and if left untreated, it can kill the organ. The heart is still working when a person is having a heart attack.
- Cardiac arrest-when a person’s electrical activity in the heart is disrupted, tachycardia occurs and the blood flow throughout the body is prevented. During a cardiac arrest, the heart stops working.
- Stroke– this health problem is a brain disorder and there are 3 types of strokes. First, there is ischemic stroke or when the arteries carrying blood and oxygen to the brain are blocked, and then transient ischemic attack which occurs when there is a short artery blood flow to the brain, and hemorrhagic stroke or a ruptured artery in the brain.
The most common symptoms of a heart attack are:
- Chest ache-a burden in the chest which recurs every few minutes, body pain in the neck, back, abdomen, jaw, and especially the left arm
- Shallow breathing and wheezing
- Cold sweating
- Tiredness and dizziness
The most common symptoms of a cardiac arrest are:
- Shallow breathing
- Excessive palpitation
- Pain in the chest
- Shortage of breath
- Weak or no pulse
- No responsiveness
- Sudden collapse
The most common symptoms of stroke are:
- Blurred speech
- Numbness in the face, arm, and leg (usually one side)
- Mental disorientation, forgetting names and places, and loss of concentration
- Double vision
- Excessive sweating
- Difficultly walking
- Transient ischemic attack