A heart attack is an event that occurs when part of the heart muscle does not get enough blood and oxygen. This part of the heart starts to die.
A heart attack most often happens because blood flow through one or more of the coronary arteries is blocked. This blockage is usually caused by a blood clot that forms when plaque in the artery breaks open.
Quick treatment that restores blood flow to the heart can help save lives.
The medical name for a heart attack is myocardial infarction, or MI. It may also be called acute coronary syndrome.
Current as of: September 7, 2022
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Rakesh K. Pai MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology & E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & George Philippides MD - Cardiology & Caroline S. Rhoads MD - Internal Medicine