Pain-Free Heart Attacks Often Misdiagnosed

by Medindia Content Team on  August 14, 2004 at 1:48 PM General Health News
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Pain-Free Heart Attacks Often Misdiagnosed
New research shows heart attacks without chest pain are more often fatal. Chest pain is just one sign of a heart attack. Instead of chest pain , some patients experience symptoms like fainting, shortness of breath, excessive sweating, or nausea and vomiting.

Researchers conducted a study to see how patients who have a heart attack without chest pain are treated and how they recover. The study included information on 20,881 patients from 14 countries. All patients were hospitalized with a variety of heart conditions. Researchers found that 1,763 of the patients did not have chest pain and 13 percent of them died in the hospital compared to 4 percent of those who experienced chest pain.

Researchers observed that most often when a patient arrives at the hospital without chest pain, it is only after the blood test results come back or other diagnoses are excluded that the physician reassesses the situation and determines it is an acute cardiac event after all.

In conclusion researchers say that they hope in future their findings will remind physicians that these events do occur in the absence of chest pain and will prompt them to make the diagnoses and institute the appropriate treatment more rapidly.

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