An Acute Myocardial Infarction
(AMI), or a heart attack
, is the necrosis
muscle following obstruction of blood flow to it. In this sense acute means new, or right now.
The main characteristics of an AMI are associated with certain types of chest pain. The pain is usally substernal, often described as a squeezing, pressing, or heaviness on the chest itself. This will last in excess of thirty minutes, and the pain may radiate to the jaw, the arms, and the epigastrium. The pain may not have been brought on by exertion, and the pain will not be alleviated by nitroglycerine pills, or sprays.
Someone experiencing an AMI may have nausea, frothy sputum, rapid shallow respiration, and exhibiting certain signs of shock i.e. pale, cold, clammy skin. They may also experience fear, and an impending sense of doom.