Heart Attack

Our physicians provide you lifesaving, immediate care

A heart attack, called myocardial infarction, occurs when the muscles around the heart do not receive enough blood and stop functioning. Blood flow stops because plaque, a waxy substance, has built up in the artery during a process called atherosclerosis.

A heart attack can threaten your life and requires immediate medical attention. IU Health Heart & Vascular physicians provide lifesaving care for heart attacks throughout the state of Indiana, offering quick response, coordinated communication between all members of the care team and advanced treatment options.

If you or a loved one is experiencing a heart attack, call 911 immediately. Do not drive to the hospital. Emergency personnel can begin lifesaving care in the back of the ambulance and ensure quicker treatment at the hospital.


Signs & Symptoms

Signs of a heart attack can differ among people. Most people experience:

  • Chest pain
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain in the arms, shoulders, neck or jaw


How We Can Help

IU Health Heart & Vascular Care physicians’ affiliation with the Indiana University School of Medicine ensures that they can offer you the latest innovations in diagnosis and treatment. They have implemented new lifesaving techniques throughout their history, bringing many treatments to Indiana for the first time.

From Level One emergency programs that ensure speed and communication coordination, to LifeLine emergency transport services, to experienced cardiac care teams, they care for you when you need them most.

Overview

A heart attack can threaten your life and requires immediate medical attention. IU Health Heart & Vascular physicians provide lifesaving care for heart attacks throughout the state of Indiana, offering quick response, coordinated communication between all members of the care team and advanced treatment options.

If you or a loved one is experiencing a heart attack, call 911 immediately. Do not drive to the hospital. Emergency personnel can begin lifesaving care in the back of the ambulance and ensure quicker treatment at the hospital.


Signs & Symptoms

Signs of a heart attack can differ among people. Most people experience:

  • Chest pain
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain in the arms, shoulders, neck or jaw


How We Can Help

IU Health Heart & Vascular Care physicians’ affiliation with the Indiana University School of Medicine ensures that they can offer you the latest innovations in diagnosis and treatment. They have implemented new lifesaving techniques throughout their history, bringing many treatments to Indiana for the first time.

From Level One emergency programs that ensure speed and communication coordination, to LifeLine emergency transport services, to experienced cardiac care teams, they care for you when you need them most.

The longer it takes for the heart muscle to receive blood flow, the more the heart muscle dies, decreasing your heart function. Once a heart attack occurs, a physician must clear the plaque causing the attack as quickly as possible to restore blood flow to the heart muscle.

Your IU Health physicians will offer comprehensive heart attack care from treatment through recovery, including:

  • LifeLine emergency services. Specially trained LifeLine crews work throughout the state of Indiana. They provide both ground and air transport so you get the help you need fast.
  • Balloon angioplasty. Balloon angioplasty reopens the artery to allow blood flow to the heart. Your physician does this by making a small incision in your groin then guiding (by X-ray) a deflated balloon through the arteries to the blocked area. Once in place, he/she inflates the balloon, allowing blood flow to return to the heart muscle.
  • Stent placement. Stent placement uses the same techniques as balloon angioplasty, except instead of inflating a balloon, your physician inserts a mesh wire tube in your artery to keep it open.
  • Coronary artery bypass surgery. For severe blockages, your surgeon will graft a new vein or artery into your heart to allow blood to divert around the blockage.
  • Cardiac rehabilitation. After a heart attack, cardiac rehabilitation improves your recovery and gets you back on your feet.
  • Medication therapies. Following a heart attack, your physician will prescribe new medications to prevent future heart attacks and improve your heart health.

Treatment

The longer it takes for the heart muscle to receive blood flow, the more the heart muscle dies, decreasing your heart function. Once a heart attack occurs, a physician must clear the plaque causing the attack as quickly as possible to restore blood flow to the heart muscle.

Your IU Health physicians will offer comprehensive heart attack care from treatment through recovery, including:

  • LifeLine emergency services. Specially trained LifeLine crews work throughout the state of Indiana. They provide both ground and air transport so you get the help you need fast.
  • Balloon angioplasty. Balloon angioplasty reopens the artery to allow blood flow to the heart. Your physician does this by making a small incision in your groin then guiding (by X-ray) a deflated balloon through the arteries to the blocked area. Once in place, he/she inflates the balloon, allowing blood flow to return to the heart muscle.
  • Stent placement. Stent placement uses the same techniques as balloon angioplasty, except instead of inflating a balloon, your physician inserts a mesh wire tube in your artery to keep it open.
  • Coronary artery bypass surgery. For severe blockages, your surgeon will graft a new vein or artery into your heart to allow blood to divert around the blockage.
  • Cardiac rehabilitation. After a heart attack, cardiac rehabilitation improves your recovery and gets you back on your feet.
  • Medication therapies. Following a heart attack, your physician will prescribe new medications to prevent future heart attacks and improve your heart health.

Patient Stories for Heart Attack

American Heart Association

This website provides in-depth information on heart attacks, signs of a heart attack and how to lower your risk of a heart attack.

Resources

American Heart Association

This website provides in-depth information on heart attacks, signs of a heart attack and how to lower your risk of a heart attack.