Do's and Don'ts in case of Chest Pain

Do's and Don'ts in case of Chest Pain

Chest pain is one of a few medical complaints that are raising its head in today’s fast paced lifestyle and the ailment requires emergency medical care.

 

By Dr. Sunil Garg

Chest pain is one of a few medical complaints that are raising its head in today’s fast paced lifestyle and the ailment requires emergency medical care.

Do's and Don'ts in case of Chest PainThe earlier you get medical care in situations of chest pain; the better is the outcome and the prognosis. The action taken during the first few minutes of an emergency is critical in the survival of an individual with chest pain especially the one related to heart disease.

Let us try to find out the Do’s and Don’ts if there is a medical emergency such as chest pain.

If someone has chest pain, how do you know if it is an emergency? There are no hard and fast rules for that. The cause of chest pain varies from minor problems such as heartburn to serious life threatening conditions as heart attack. Sometimes even minor chest symptoms can be life threatening. But definitely there are some alarming signs that warn you to rush to doctor. 1. If someone has one or more associated risk factor for heart disease as smoking, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, raised cholesterol, diabetes. 2. Family history of heart disease or known case of heart disease. 3. Type of Pain – tightening, squeezing, heaviness usually in the centre of the chest 4. The pain is accompanied by weakness, nausea, shortness of breath, sweating, dizziness or fainting. 5. Pain radiates to arm, shoulders or jaw. 6. Pain is accompanied by some kind of horrible feeling as if something is wrong (sense of impending doom) 7. Pain may last for a few minutes, but comes and goes or it may worsen over the period of time say 15-20 minutes . 8. Often associated with nausea, sweating, palpitation and shortness of breath or fainting.   Chest pain is not a medical emergency if any of the following are true: The intensity of pain changes with changes in body position. The pain worsens with a deep breath or with coughing.   What to do when someone has chest pain? The first step to take when chest pain occurs is to call the doctor.

What to do till you get the medical help?

When someone has chest pain 1. Make the person rest and try to calm down. 2. Never drive yourself to the hospital when you are having chest pain. 3. Loosen any tight clothing. 4. Enquire if the person takes any medicine for a known heart disease If he or she does, help the person to take the medication (Usually nitroglycerin, placed under the tongue. Aspirin can also be given).

Don’ts

1. Don’t delay in getting medical help. 2. Don’t make the person walk or sit. 3. Never leave the person suffering from chest pain alone 4. Don’t wait to see if the symptoms go away. 5. Don’t give the person anything orally unless a medicine as nitroglycerin/aspirin
About The Author – Dr. Sunil Garg is a Critical care (ICU) specialist, based in Udaipur. By this article his aim is to create awareness among people how to go about and deal with commonly encountered emergency medical situations till one gets medical help.

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