Affiliated Chest Pain Center
Cumberland Medical Center is a part of the Saint Thomas Health Regional Network of chest pain centers. It demonstrates a successful, multi-disciplinary, integrated approach to improve cardiac and stroke care across middle Tennessee and southern Kentucky. It provides for most appropriate treatment closest to home or ensure a quick, seamless transfer to a tertiary care facility when more specialized care is needed.
Goal of the Saint Thomas Chest Pain Network:
(1) Educate the community on warning signs and risk factors of heart disease;
(2) Educate the community on the importance of seeking early intervention when experiencing symptoms of heart attack;
(3) Improve community emergency access;
(4) Improve diagnosis, treatment and intervention related to Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS) at the local hospital;
(5) Develop a dedicated observation setting that allows physicians to monitor patients when it is not clear if they are having a coronary event.
Components of a Chest Pain Center:
The components of a Chest Pain Center includes the ENTIRE facility working together to provide the BEST possible care for the chest pain patient. From the 9-1-1 call that someone is having a heart attack - to the patient’s discharge after a heart attack - to cardiac intervention.
What is Acute Coronary Syndrome?
The term “acute coronary syndrome” is increasingly used to describe patients who present with either acute MI (either STEMI or NSTEMI), or unstable angina. These forms of heart disease happen when an occlusion of one or more coronary arteries occurs, usually following plaque rupture, resulting in decreased oxygen supply to the heart. This lack of oxygen may cause pain, damage, or death to the heart.
Some statistics according to the American Heart Association:
Coronory Heart Disease is the largest killer of American males and females annually. The estimated annual incidence of MI is 600,000 new attacks and 320, 000 recurrent attacks = that’s almost 1 million MI’s per year! About 38% of people who experience a coronary attack in a given year will die from it. About 82% of people who die from coronary heart disease are age 65 or older. The average age of a person having their first attack is 64.5 for men and 70.4 for women.
So what does that mean to us?
We need to be able to recognize ACS and treat it appropriately!
What are the major risk factors?
- Any history of coronary heart disease (personal or family history)
- Not exercising or being overweight
- High cholesterol
- Your risk also increases with age (men 33 years and women 40 years)
What are the signs and symptoms of ACS?
- Chest pain or discomfort
- Pain or discomfort in arms, shoulders, neck back or jaw
- Abdominal pain
- Shortness of breath