Alternate Names : Myocardial Infarction, MI
What can be done to prevent the condition?
Heart attacks cannot always be prevented. It is important to control high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol. A person can lower his or her risk by maintaining a healthy body weight. Physical
activity and a
diet designed to reduce heart disease can help prevent heart attacks.
The American Heart Association recently issued recommendations about hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in women. For women who have already had a heart attack or have heart disease, it appears that HRT does not protect against having another heart attack or dying from heart disease. The studies that support this information were done with women over 65 years of age. It is unclear if this information also holds true for younger postmenopausal women who take HRT.
For women who have not already had a heart attack or who do not have heart disease, HRT should not be started for the sole purpose of preventing heart disease. The research is not strong enough to support doing that at this time. Also, a woman who is doing well on HRT doesn't need to stop it.
What are the long-term effects of the condition?
Depression can occur following a
heart attack. Most people who survive for a few days after a heart attack can
expect a full recovery. However, about 10% of people who have a heart
attack die within a year.
What are the risks to others?
Heart attacks are not contagious and pose no risk to others.