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Users comments and reviews on article How Much Do You Know About Heart Attack? by Ng Peng Hock

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I think that this has taken a lot of the mystery out of having a heart attack so I don't think I'd fear it as badly as I used to without knowing much about it. An ounce of prevention as they say! Thanks for posting this article!
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Health Ace
6889 posts
It sounds quite familiar to me. I had my CABG in '96. I feel the part about family history may be the most relevant factor involved in heart attacks. My father had his in the summer of 1953, he turned 56 in June of 53. I had mine in March of 96, I turned 56 in April of 96. I was only 13 when he had his so I don't know the exact date of his but I would love to be able to find out to see how close we were to being the exact same age.

They say exercise is all important but my father had been a letter carrier for 20 years at the time of his. I don't know how much more walking you would expect any human being to do every day than what his job required. They didn't run around in little Jeeps in 1953. He walked his whole route with the mail on his shoulder in a leather bag.

I have written to the VA hospital where he was treated, they only have a record of his visit a year later for something else.

They weren't doing bypass surgery in 1953 but he said they cut him open and "broke" some of his ribs to get inside. At 13 I wasn't interested in looking at the scars. He also said they flew a heart doctor from Houston TX, in the back seat of a jet fighter to the Manchester, NH VA hospital to treat him. I would really like to find out more about that.

I believe Dr DeBakey was working for the VA in Houston at that time and flying in the back seat of a jet fighter sounds like the crazy kind of thing he might have done. I wish I could find out just what was done to my father when they went inside him and who treated him, at a time when bypass surgery was just being thought of. Maybe he WAS the first bypass patient and never knew it.

While I was in cardiac rehab, a team from Dartmouth came to the hospital and paid us to sit down with them for an afternoon to tell them about our experiences with our heart attacks and treatment. There were about 30 of us there, and what struck me was that only one of us went to the emergency room in an ambulance, all the rest drove there.

The one who did, was a lady who was on a cruise ship that docked in Alaska to get her to a hospital and an ambulance met the ship.
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Wow, Njoyn, thanks for sharing your story. I think it's important that you brought that up because exercise can help but ther'es a lot of genetic factors that people don't consider. What about you? Were you also very active?
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Health Ace
6889 posts
Bluedog, I like to think I was. I didn't go hiking or exercising on purpose but in my work as a TV repair technician I certainly lug around things that are a lot heavier than most people do. When I got into cardiac rehab, they tested us to decide what settings to use on the exercise machines. While they started most of the guys at no more that 40 to 50 pounds on many machines, they pegged me at 90 to 100 to start. From that I would deduce that I was probably in better shape than most of my peers, and they WERE my peers. In that class I found many guys AND gals I grew up with.

One guy who was a bee farmer, I knew from being one of my customers, always had a comment about heredity when the girls who were our drill instructors at rehab went off about exercise. He always came back at them with "you can't beat your genes".

I didn't think I was any different than most until after I had the heart attack and I got in rehab. I found it hard to believe and even harder to watch as others my age struggled to do things that I found relatively easy. I was never a physical exercise nut in any way. During the warmup exercises they had us do bending and stretching that I had no real problem doing while most of the others found it quite difficult.

The standing on one foot while stretching the other leg up in back was my forte. Everyone else had to hold something to keep from falling over and I have to admit they didn't give us the best surface to stand on if you're doing balancing tricks. The floor was carpeted!!! But I had no problems balancing on one foot. Again I attribute that to my work. When you pull in a driveway to deliver a TV and you look at the door that's 100 feet away, you don't feel like going up to ring the bell, then go back to get the TV. I just carry the TV up to the door and ring the bell. Now to do that I have to let go with one had to ring the bell. I bring up one knee to hold the TV on the side I let go of with the hand. That leaves me balancing on one foot while holding a TV. I never thought anything about this being particularly difficult as I began doing it when I was about 13, but it obviously gave me pretty good balance.
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Grate article, keep up the good work.
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