The down-the-road dangers of heart attack

Experts say that thanks to quick emergency treatment, seven in ten people now survive a heart attack.

If you’ve been one of them, you might think that once you leave the hospital, the worst is over. After all, any heart attack survivor will have even more incentive to live healthier going forward. As long as that’s the plan, surely things can only get better.

Sadly, research out of the U.K. from the University of Leeds is proving that’s an uphill battle.

In fact, results of the study show that the danger caused by a heart attack is far from over when you get home. It could be just the beginning of working even harder to secure your health…

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From depression to severe bleeding

The researchers analyzed the records of almost 146 million people who had a heart attack from January 2008 to January 2017, comparing their health outcomes to a control group of over two million people.

Overall, they found that after having a heart attack, you’re at much higher risk for a slew of serious health conditions and even early death.

The results showed that up to one-third of heart attack victims go on to develop heart or kidney failure, while seven percent will experience further heart attacks and a frightening 38 percent will die from any cause within nine years.

Other health conditions that are more frequent in people who have suffered a heart attack than in healthy people are:

And to top it off, people who have a heart attack are more likely to live with depression — especially women. The study found that women were much more likely to develop depression after a heart attack than men, even more so if they had a heart attack below the age of 40.

The only good news from the study was it appears that your risk of dementia — other than vascular dementia, which slightly increases — doesn’t change whether you have a heart attack or not.

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Avoiding a first heart attack

Lead author of the study, Dr. Marlous Hall explained, “Our study highlights the need for individual care plans to be revised to take into account the higher demand for care caused by survivorship.” 

But I think it certainly drives home an even more important message: avoiding a first heart attack.

Unfortunately, medical care tends to put more focus on management of established disease. But if your doctor shared with you how your health could go downhill fast after a heart attack (which you’ve just read) and provided you with a guideline of how to avoid one in the first place — I bet more of us would work harder at it.

In fact, if you can follow a handful of recommendations, you can increase your odds of scoring low — and slowing risk progression — for a marker that may be a better predictor of future heart attack than cholesterol

According to Viet Le, PA-C, a physician assistant and cardiovascular researcher at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute, “High blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and smoking are all risks of heart disease, yet many people who have those risks never have the disease or suffer an event. Coronary artery calcium is the disease — and to an extent, it shows just how much of the disease is present.”

Calcium is also the reason most cardiologists don’t talk about chelation therapy.

A coronary calcium scan measures the amount of calcium in your arteries. Calcium buildup is your body’s misguided attempt to make plaque stable. But where there’s stable plaque, there’s also unstable plaque that can break away and cause a heart attack or stroke.

A 2013 study found that a combination of regular exercise, a healthy diet, not smoking and maintaining healthy weight was associated with a lower calcium score and slower calcium progression. The lower the score, the lower the risk of future heart attack.

Editor’s note: Have you heard of EDTA chelation therapy? It was developed originally to remove lead and other contaminants, including heavy metals, from the body. Its uses now run the gamut from varicose veins to circulation. Click here to discover Chelation: Natural Miracle for Protecting Your Heart and Enhancing Your Health!


Heart attack significantly increases risk of other health conditions — EurekAlert!

Low-Risk Lifestyle, Coronary Calcium, Cardiovascular Events, and Mortality: Results From MESA — American Journal of Epidemiology

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

By Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst is a board-certified Doctor of Chiropractic, with more than 20 years of experience. She has dedicated herself to helping others enjoy life at every age through the use of alternative medicine and natural wellness options. Dr. Schmedthorst enjoys sharing her knowledge with the alternative healthcare community, providing solutions for men and women who are ready to take control of their health the natural way.