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The heart is the organ that supplies blood and oxygen to all parts of the body. Maintaining a good heart health is important for well being and having a long life. Below sections inform your about any chest pain symptoms and also necessary measures to maintain a good heart condition
Chest pain may be a symptom of a number of serious conditions and is, in general, considered a medical emergency. Heart diseases are the leading causes of chest pain and death in both men and women worldwide.
Although genetics plays a role in the development of heart disease, lifestyle choices have been proven to significantly influence the health of your heart. The more risk factors you have, the greater your chance of having a heart attack or stroke.
Nature of chest pain:
You may feel chest pain anywhere from your neck to your upper abdomen. Depending on its cause, chest pain may be:
A Tight, squeezing, or crushing sensation
Causes of chest pain range from non-serious to serious to life-threatening condition. There are more than 400 causes for chest pain.
Your past medical history and physical examination plays a key role in finding the cause of your chest pain. After collecting brief history from you, your doctor may advise you with following set of investigations:
(ECG) electrocardiogram: The ECG is a diagnostic tool that is routinely used to assess the electrical and muscular functions of the heart. It is a relatively simple test to perform.
Stress test: Sometimes angina is easier to diagnose when your heart is working harder. During a stress test, you exercise by walking on a treadmills or pedaling a stationary bicycle.
CT scanning may be used in unexplained chest pain when other tests are inconclusive.
Echocardiogram. An echocardiogram uses sound waves to produce images of the heart.
X-rays of the chest and abdomen.
- Troponin I or T (to indicate myocardial damage)
- Complete blood count
- Electrolytes and renal function tests (creatinine)
- Liver enzymes
- Creatine kinase (and CK-MB fraction)
- D-dimer (when suspicion for pulmonary embolism is present but low)
- Serum lipase or amylase to exclude acute pancreatitis etc.
For more details you can watch:
Treatment for your chest pain :
Depending upon the severity of the heart attack treatment may vary which include:
Medicines to dissolve a blood clot for example, one that is blocking a coronary artery. Medications, such as nitro-glycerine, aspirin, and clot-busting drugs and Oxygen.
Angioplasty and stent implantation a procedure to open up a blocked coronary artery using a balloon at the point of narrowing.
Bypass surgery an operation in which blood flow is redirected around a narrowed area in one or more of your coronary arteries. It is also called coronary artery bypass graft surgery (often shortened to CABG).
Long-term use of medicines to lower the risk of further heart problems. Be advised by your doctor.
Implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICD) a small device that is sometimes implanted near the heart to manage abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias) that may occur after a heart attack.
What to do till you get the medical help?:
You can watch following videos to understand more about heart attack and its treatment.
Some people who have diabetic heart disease (DHD) may have no signs or symptoms of heart disease. This is called "silent" heart disease or SILENT CHEST PAIN.
If the person is unconscious and unresponsive, call ambulance (or your local emergency number), then begin CPR.Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a lifesaving technique useful in many emergencies, including heart attack or near drowning, in which someone's breathing or heartbeat has stopped. If you're not trained in CPR, then provide hands-only CPR. That means uninterrupted chest compressions of about 100 a minute until paramedics arrive (described in more detail below). You don't need to try rescue breathing.
- Make the person rest and try to calm down.
- Never drive yourself to the hospital when you are having chest pain.
- Loosen any tight clothing.
- Enquire if the person takes any medicine for a known heart disease.
- If he or she does, help the person to take the medication (Usually nitro-glycerine, placed under the tongue. Aspirin can also be given).
- Take your drugs the way your doctor or nurse told you to.
- Avoid salty foods.
- Avoid smoke and do not let anybody smoke in your home, since second-hand smoke (passive smoking) can harm you.
- Stay away from fast food restaurants.
- Don't delay in getting medical help.
- Don't make the person walk or sit.
- Never leave the person suffering from chest pain alone.
- Don't wait to see if the symptoms go away.
- Don't give the person anything orally unless a medicine as nitro-glycerine/aspirin
- Do not drink any alcohol for at least 2 weeks.
- Do not take any other drugs or herbal supplements without asking your doctor first if they are safe for you.
- Do NOT suddenly stop taking these drugs for your heart.
- Do NOT stop taking drugs for your diabetes, high blood pressure, or any other medical conditions you may have without talking with your doctor first.
Life Long Instructions for chest pain patients:
Maintain a balanced diet and perform regular physical activity.
Eat foods that are low in saturated fats and cholesterol.
Avoid foods high sodium content. If overweight or obese, loose the extra kilos and maintain a healthy weight.
Quit smoking and cut down on alcohol. Check your blood pressure and blood glucose regularly.
Do not stop any medicines without doctor's consultation.
Maintaining an Ideal Weight is crucial as obesity is a big risk factor for hypertension. Even losing 5 kilos can reduce blood pressure (BP). Calculate your Body Mass Index (BMI) and aim to keep it below 23.
A moderate intensity workout lasting 30 -60 minutes daily can help lower BP and also help maintain a healthy weight.
Tobacco and Smoking
Tobacco and second-hand smoke as it can lead to other cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Call - the Quit Line, 1800-22-77-87. For more-
Abstinence is the best policy
Alcohol is high in calories and known to increase blood pressure. Talk to your doctor to know more about how much alcohol can be consumed.
Stress can increase BP. Incorporate a daily routine to relax and rejuvenate try to listen to soothing music, chant, read a book or meditate.
Yoga can also help, check out (it is in Hindi language) -
Limit intake of tea, coffee, colas and chocolate to only 1 Cup a day. Lowered caffeine intake is known to induce a better sleep during the night and reduce BP.
To avoid the state of hypertension and high BP, it is necessary to combine positive dietary and lifestyle changes with the recommended medications.
Typically, food items can be classified into six major groups as shown in the Healthy Heart pyramid.(7)
Immediate Diet Plan
1.Include lots of fresh, seasonal, local and if possible organic Fruits and Vegetables.
2.Add plenty of Whole Grains (whole wheat flour, brown rice, whole beans).
3.Choose foods high in Good Fat such as olive oil, peanut oil, fatty fish, walnuts, flaxseeds. If you do not eat fish, talk to your doctor about taking fish supplements like cod liver oil capsules.
1.Say NO to all Sugary beverages and foods. Do not add any extra sugar to beverages like tea coffee etc. Especially important if diabetic.
2.Refined ingredients like white rice, white flour, maida should be completely omitted from diets. Especially important if diabetic.
3.Avoid combination of sugary and refined foods like cakes, pies, ice creams as they do the most harm. Especially important if diabetic.
4.Avoid Unhealthy Fats such as Cholesterol, Saturated and Trans Fat. Stay away from egg yolks, cream, butter, ghee, coconut, deep fried items, whole milk, dalda, vanspati. No Carbonated, Caffeinated and Alcoholic beverages.
5.Curb Salt intake, as it can increase blood pressure. Don't add salt while cooking and reduce packaged food consumption.
- 1/2 Cup Brown rice with 1 Cup Mixed vegetable sambar OR 1 Cup Brown rice Khichadi with 1 small bowl of Raita made with low fat yoghurt
- 1 Cup Cabbage curry OR Bottle gourd (Lauki) curry
- 1 Cup Buttermilk
Late Night Snack
- 1/2Cup Skim milk infused with Saffron
Life Long Instructions
It is never too late to adapt a healthy lifestyle. Maintain a balanced diet and perform regular physical activity. Eat foods that are low in saturated fats and cholesterol. Avoid foods high sodium content. If overweight or obese, loose the extra kilos and maintain a healthy weight. Quit smoking and cut down on alcohol. Check your blood pressure regularly.
Eat Right and Exercise your way to a Healthy Heart.