A heart attack is also called a myocardial infarction. It is a medical condition that occurs when the blood supply to a part of the heart is interrupted. The resulting blood or oxygen shortage causes damage and potential death of heart tissue. As of 2007, about 7.9 million Americans age 20 and older have survived a heart attack, according to the American Heart Association.
If you have a heart attack, you are more likely to survive if you know the signs and symptoms, call 9-1-1 right away, and get to a hospital quickly. People who have had a heart attack can also reduce the risk of future heart attacks or strokes by making lifestyle changes and taking medication.
There are five diseases included in the broader category of chronic diseases: cardiac heart disease, high cholesterol, heart attack, stroke and hypertension (high blood pressure). These diseases are long-term illnesses that many individuals can manage through lifestyle changes and healthcare interventions. However, they do place a burden on many of the affected individuals by constraining options and activities available to them and can result in expensive and ongoing expenditures for health care.
All measures are self-reported by respondents to the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Resources for heart and vascular diseases are at National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute as well as at theDivision for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention, CDC.
The measures tracked by America's Health Rankings are those actions that can affect the future health of the population. For a state to improve the health of its population, efforts must focus on these measures, these determinants of health.
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