Difference Between Heart Attack and Heart Failure

Both heart attack and heart failure are terms frequently used in the medical context, as well as in everyday conversations. Both refer to problems that directly affect the proper functioning of the heart. Difference Between Heart Attack and Heart Failure

The heart is a vitally important organ for the body and the moment it stops or stops working as it should, it affects the rest of the organs. It alters the functions of every organ and tissue in the body.

Of all the problems that can affect the heart, the two most common are heart failure and heart attack; hence people often mistake one condition for the other and believe they are the same. However, although both problems sound similar they should never be confused, since they are different things.

If you have doubts about the difference between heart failure and heart attack or are simply looking for a little more information to complement what you already know, then keep reading, because below we explain everything you need know around this interesting topic.

HEART ATTACK  Difference Between Heart Attack and Heart Failure

We speak of a heart attack when the said organ is unable to receive blood due to a blockage in one of the major arteries. That is, the blood that flows to the heart is restricted, thus causing the heart cells to die.

For this problem to occur, a blockage has to occur in one of the coronary arteries , thereby causing a vulnerable atherosclerotic plaque to rupture; which is nothing more than an unstable collection of lipids and white cells in the arterial wall.

A heart attack is also known as a myocardial infarction. The reduced blood flow as a result of what we have already explained, has the consequence that oxygen does not reach the heart and severe pain in the chest is manifested. Pain that can spread to the shoulders, arms, neck, and even the back.

How is the artery blocked in the first place? Well, calcium plaques, proteins and inflammatory cells are formed that are responsible for obstructing it.

Still, there may be other reasons for a heart attack; for example, it could be due to a severe spasm or arterial shrinkage.

Symptoms of a heart attack include the following: discomfort or pressure in parts such as the chest, arms, breasts, back, face … heaviness, pain in the aforementioned parts, sweating, nausea, shortness of breath and heartbeat irregular. These symptoms usually last about thirty minutes. You can have a heart attack without having any symptoms. “Silent” heart attacks are common in diabetic patients.


On the other hand, we speak of heart failure when the heart is unable to exercise its function of maintaining blood flow; which causes a drastic drop in pressure.

Heart failure is also known as heart failure. It is characterized by a weakening of the heart that stops being able to carry out its function. The weakening or drop in blood pressure that results from heart failure in turn causes the kidneys to retain water and salt, which causes fluid to accumulate in parts of the body such as the knees, legs, feet and arms.

Finally, there are two types of heart failure: systolic dysfunction and diastolic dysfunction. The first occurs when the heart muscle does not pump with enough force and thus less oxygen-laden blood flows through the body. The second occurs when the heart pumps hard enough, but the ventricles are stiff and reduce the flow of pressure to the rest of the body.

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