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Heart attack - what to ask your doctor
A heart attack occurs when blood flow to a part of your heart is blocked long enough that part of the heart muscle is damaged or dies. It is also called a myocardial infarction (MI).
Angina is pain or pressure in the chest that happens when your heart muscle is not getting enough blood or oxygen. You sometimes feel it in your neck or jaw. Sometimes you may notice only that your breath is short.
Below are some questions you may want to ask your doctor or nurse to help you take care of your recent heart attack.
What to ask your doctor about your heart attack
What are the signs and symptoms that I am having angina? Will I always have the same symptoms?
How much activity or exercise can I do?
Do I need to have a stress test? Do I need to go to a cardiac rehabilitation program?
When can I return to work? Are there limits on what I can do at work?
What should I do if I feel sad or very worried about my heart disease?
How can I change the way I live to make my heart healthier?
Is it okay to be sexually active? Is it safe to use sildenafil (Viagra), vardenafil (Levitra), or tadalafil (Cialis) if I’m a man?
What medicines am I taking to treat angina?
If I am taking aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), or another blood thinner, is it okay to take ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), or other medicines for pain from arthritis, headaches, or other problems?
Review Date: 3/6/2011
Reviewed by: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; Michael A. Chen, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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