What Is Myocardial Infarction and What Causes It?

Q:
What is myocardial infarction and what causes it?

A:
A myocardial infarction, also called a heart attack, occurs when the flow of blood to the heart is blocked.

The blockage is most often a buildup of fat, cholesterol and other substances, which form a plaque in the arteries that feed the heart (coronary arteries).

The plaque eventually breaks away and forms a clot. The interrupted blood flow can damage or destroy part of the heart muscle.

Causes
There are two main causes of myocardial infarction, and they are:

  • Coronary artery disease, causing most heart attacks.
  • A spasm of a coronary artery – using tobacco and illicit drugs, such as cocaine, can cause a life-threatening spasm.

 

 

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.