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Your opinion: Feb. 20, 2016

Women beware
February is Heart Healthy Month. February holds as a special month for me since I had a heart attack at age 44 in Feb. 2012. One stent has held true for me till now. But I knew what happened to me as it was happening. As a Paramedic I recognized all the classic sign s which led me to the Cath Lab at PPMH for a stent that aided my recovery. I recognized the symptoms and got quick care.
Fast forward to 2016. My wife wakes me up with wanting to know where the Tums were. She was hurting in her right shoulder and chest and had thrown up twice. She has a history of GERD and has frequent vomiting. Got better after the Tums and went to work. At 9am she called me and said that the pain was unbearable. I told her to go to the ER and I would meet her there. She did and the ER staff was very prompt in assessing her pain and symptoms.
It wasn’t until the 4th EKG that confirmed the she had had an anterior acute myocardial infarction. A quick EMS trip to PPMH Cath Lab for 2 stents and 2 nights in Critical Care made for a recovery that will take time for the heart muscle to heal.
I write this for the women out there who have pain in their chest or back. Cardiac events in women are far different than men. Your symptoms may be far different than what is believed to be the typical chest pains. Act on it. Seek medical attention immediately. It may be the difference between life and death.
My wife is home recuperating. The damage is done and my hope is that it will improve over time. Know your symptoms and don’t treat them as indigestion. The life you save might be your own.
Michael B. Mock, RN, EMT-P (ret)
Americus