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E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork and heart surgeon Dr. Gonzalo Gonzalez-Stawinski explain what happens during the widow-maker ...
Tags:How a Widow Maker Heart Attack Happens,cardiac arrest,Dr. Gonzalo Gonzalez Stawinski,Dr. Travis Stork,Heart attack,heart attack information,heart health problems,the doctors,TheDoctors,widow maker
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How a Widow Maker Heart Attack Happens
Dr. Travis Stork: Now, what I want to look at what happens when you have a heart attack of this nature. The heart needs oxygen to be and it gets that oxygen through blood, through this coronary arteries and what can happen is a plaque can rupture and platelets and everything else aggregate and then what happens is you blocked that arteries that below that block s there’s no blood flow to the heart. The heart muscle dies, the electric conduction gets all messed up, someone goes into you, usually ventricular fibrillation which is what happened most likely to Patrick. We can shock you out of that on occasion but the one thing about this is Patrick you’re very lucky because by the time you went into cardiac arrest, you already had helped there with you, right?
Patrick: Yes, I was actually in the ambulance in the back part and out of East High School, the first time I went to sleep.
Dr. Travis Stork: We’ve heard stories that you’ve died six times. Really what happen is you went into cardiac arrest six times, correct?
Patrick: Yes sir.
Dr. Travis Stork: And just to clarify for people at home the difference between true death and cardiac arrest.
Dr. Gonzalo Stawinski: You could still have a cardiac arrest and not necessarily die. That’s usually the clinical definition of dying is when there’s cessation of brain function and organ function. And usually that is my definition what clinical death is.
You can have a cardiac arrest and we see a lot of these in the Cleveland Clinic but because we act quickly we maintain the people alive with techniques such as CPR.
Dr. Travis Stork: And the vessels, when you’re looking at a live part the vessels are so very small which is why a small blockage can literally have devastating consequences. You can see these arteries running down the heart. They’re very small and one plaque if it ruptures can cause a 100% blockage and like we’ve talked about immediate death.