A heart attack occurs when the flow of blood to the heart is severely reduced or blocked. The blockage is usually due to a buildup of fat, cholesterol and other substances in the heart (coronary) arteries. The fatty, cholesterol-containing deposits are called plaques. The process of plaque buildup is called atherosclerosis.
Sometimes, a plaque can rupture and form a clot that blocks blood flow. A lack of blood flow can damage or destroy part of the heart muscle.
A heart attack is also called a myocardial infarction.
Prompt treatment is needed for a heart attack to prevent death. Call 911 or emergency medical help if you think you might be having a heart attack.
A heart attack is a frightening experience. If you have experienced a heart attack, or are close with someone who has, you should know this: You are not alone. In fact, tens of thousands of people survive heart attacks and go on to lead productive, enjoyable lives.
Expert diagnosis and treatment personalized for you
Successful treatment starts with an accurate diagnosis. Our heart experts take the time to listen and understand symptoms and concerns. You might undergo several tests so that your doctors can identify exactly what’s causing your signs and symptoms. Then they work with you to design an individualized treatment plan that aligns with your needs and goals.
Cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons work with doctors specializing in echocardiography, electrophysiology, interventional cardiology and radiology.
Applying the latest in research
American Heart Center cardiologists constantly seek new knowledge to improve diagnosis and therapies for people with heart disease. You may have an opportunity to be part of one of the clinic’s many heart-related clinical trials.
Artificial intelligence (AI) cardiology physicians and scientists are moving AI cardiology research advances into clinical practice to improve care by identifying strokes and predicting who is at risk of heart disease.
Our physician-scientists collaborate with researchers worldwide, contributing to advances in medicine that improve cardiovascular care for people everywhere. For example, they are testing a way to do a procedure remotely using robotic tools. It holds promise for people who need an emergency procedure to open a clogged artery, called percutaneous coronary intervention.
Collaborative, seamless care
Cardiologists at American Heart Center are part of an integrated, multidisciplinary group. The cardiovascular team at the American Heart Center collaborates with experts in many specialties to provide you with comprehensive care. These experts include doctors trained in surgery, radiology, pathology, endocrinology and other areas, depending on your condition.
A team focused on you
Having all this expertise in a single place means that your care is discussed among the team, test results are available quickly, and appointments are scheduled in coordination. Highly specialized heart experts work together for you. What might take weeks or even months to accomplish elsewhere can typically be done in a matter of days at the American Heart Center.