A special film screening was held at Wrexham Maelor Hospital this week to raise awareness about the symptoms of a heart attack.
The Cardiac Rehabilitation Team from the hospital created the film with StoryJar to show the misconceptions around heart attack symptoms and encourage people to call 999 within 10 minutes.
There are various signs of a heart attack and severity varies from person to person but the most common symptoms may include, discomfort in the jaw, neck, throat, back, arm or arms, chest, upper stomach. The person may feel short of breath, sweating, clammy, light-headed, feel sick or be sick; might be pale or ghastly in colour.
Jacqui Cliff, Lead Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurse, said: “People don’t call 999 for a number of reasons, even when they think they are having a heart attack. Generally, we find people feel the symptoms are not strong enough to bother anyone. They don’t want to appear foolish or embarrassed that they have called 999 for something that hasn’t stopped them in their tracks.
“People are used to managing their ailments and ill-health by themselves where they can, so, it’s understandable that people don’t feel a need to call 999 when their symptoms aren’t like you’d find on TV – ‘I didn’t clutch my chest like they show on the telly’. It’s not always like it is on TV and it’s important people know this.
“Particularly with the advice to stay home and avoid unnecessarily calling for medical attention, people with heart attack symptoms do not recognise their symptoms are a sign of a medical emergency.
“We’ve launched this event so people know the symptoms of a heart attack and know when to call 999. We want people to know they have permission to call 999. We hope the film shows that staff are fully on board with people ringing 999 with symptoms of a heart.”
Jacqui helped launch the special screening which shares the heart attack experiences of two real-life patients Cyril (https://youtu.be/6ZWGV8vTxr0) and Jane (https://youtu.be/yTribqFNCMg). The film also featured staff members from Wrexham Maelor Hospital, Wrexham County Borough Council, and Welsh Ambulance Service NHS Trust.