A heart attack, also referred to as a myocardial infarction, occurs when the blood flow to the heart becomes blocked. This is most often caused by plaque that builds up on the walls of the coronary walls over the years. If the blood flow isn’t restored promptly, the heart muscle becomes permanently damaged due to the lack of oxygen and begins to die. The leading cause of death for men and women, heart attacks claim the lives of roughly 785,000 people a year in the U.S.
The Florida Hospital Cardiovascular Institute strives each year to ensure that all myocardial infarction patients receive the appropriate evidence based care focusing on the core measures that are publicly reported by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid as well as the Joint Commission. In 2007 and 2008, we cared for more than 3,400 patients with a primary diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction.