Heart Attack

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a heart attack?

A heart attack happens when the flow of oxygen-rich blood to a section of heart muscle suddenly becomes blocked and the heart can’t get enough oxygen. If blood flow isn’t restored quickly, the section of heart muscle begins to die.

Other names for a heart attack are

  • myocardial infarction (MI)
  • acute myocardial infarction (AMI)
  • acute coronary syndrome
  • coronary thrombosis
  • coronary occlusion

(Watch the video on this page to learn more about heart attacks. To enlarge the video, click the brackets in the lower right-hand corner of the video screen. To reduce the video, press the Escape (Esc) button on your keyboard.)