Presents with central chest pain that is classically heavy in nature, like a sensation of pressure or squeezing. Examination is variable, and findings range from normal to a critically ill patient in cardiogenic shock.
ST-elevation MI (STEMI) is suspected when a patient presents with persistent ST-segment elevation in 2 or more anatomically contiguous ECG leads in the context of a consistent clinical history.
CK-MB and cardiac-specific troponins confirm diagnosis. Treatment should, however, be started immediately in patients with a typical history and ECG changes, without waiting for laboratory results.
Immediate and prompt revascularization can prevent or decrease myocardial damage and decrease morbidity and mortality.
About a quarter of patients in the US who have an acute MI will die of it, half within 1 hour of the onset of symptoms.
Survivors of acute MI should be closely followed up for adequate modification of risk factors and development of complications.