Heart Attack Cases at ERs Fall by Half

by steven reinberg
healthdy reprter

wed, may 20, 2020 (healthdy news) — u.s. emergency rooms are seeing bout ½ as many ♥ attack patients as usual — and researchers suspect the new coronavirus tis reason why.

it’s not that fewer pplz are having ♥ attacks, drs say. rather, it’s fear of gettin covid-19 keeping pplz from hospitals.

na consequences can be deadly.

“i’m certainly not convinced that the true rate of ♥ attacks goin down explains even a large pt of this finding,” said lead researcher dr. matthew solomon, a cardiologist at kaiser permanente in oakland, calif.

“we definitely think t'has something to do w'da public’s response and fear bout coming to the hospital and gettin infected,” he said.

solomon noted that after other major events, s'as 9/11 and earthquakes, the rate of ♥ attacks went up.

“we know there’s a lotta public anxiety and sufferation and fear, and those things themselves ‘d potentially be causing a higher rate of ♥ attack,” solomon said.

“there are also a lotta reprts that the emergency med srvcs are finding higher rates of death at home, and we worry dat a' good portion of those ‘d be patients having ♥ attacks and strokes who did not seek care,” he added.

for the study, solomon and his colleagues used data from kaiser permanente northern california, a health care plan that includes + than 4.4 million patients. they compared the weekly rates of er treatment for ♥ attacks b4 and after mar 4, the date of the 1st death from covid-19 in northern california.

looking at records from jan. 1 through apr 14, they found that the weekly rate of hospitalization for ♥ attacks dropped 48% during the coronavirus period.

+over, fewer pplz with preexisting ♥ disease or prior ♥ attack went to the emergency room during the covid weeks of mar 4 through apr 14, compared to the pre-covid time frame, the researchers found.

a similar decrease for the covid period was seen when the researchers looked atta same weekly periods in 2019.

continued

pplz ‘d not be afraid to go to hospitals, solomon said.

“hospitals mite be 1-odda safest places in america rite now, compared to the grocery store nother places,” said researcher dr. alan go, director of comprehensive clinical research at kaiser permanente.

“there are some reprts that find that transmission of covid within our hospitals is incredibly lo,” he said.

solomon agreed. “in all of our hospitals across the country, pplz ‘ve been working incredibly hard, creating triage systems to keep patients safe and to treat respiratory patients in one zone and non-respiratory patients in another zone,” he said.

any-1 with symptoms offa ♥ attack or stroke ‘d call 911, just as they ‘d in normal times, solomon said.

dr. gregg fonarow, director of the ahmanson-university of california, los angeles cardiomyopathy center, said this phenomenon is occurring across the country.

“there ‘ve been a № of recent reprts suggesting that during the covid-19 pandemic, there s'been a significant decrease inna № of patients presenting to the hospital with acute cardiovascular conditions, including ♥ attacks and stroke,” said fonarow, who wasn’t pt of the study.

the findings further rez concerns that pplz with serious cardiovascular conditions aint seeking necessary care, and this maybe contributing to the increase in cardiac arrest and deaths at home, he said.

it appears some pplz are delaying calling 911 and sufferation fatal consequences in their home, fonarow said.

“tis crit for any individual who thinks they maybe having a ♥ attack or stroke to call 911 atta 1st signs or symptoms. doin’ this quickly can save one’s life, and emergency rooms and hospitals are safe,” he said.

the reprt was published may 18 in a letter inna new england journal of med.

webmd news from healthdy

srcs

srcs: matthew solomon, m.d., ph.d., cardiologist, kaiser permanente, oakland, calif.; alan go, m.d., director, comprehensive clinical research, kaiser permanente, oakland, calif.; gregg fonarow, m.d., director, ahmanson-university of california, los angeles cardiomyopathy center; may 18, 2020,new england journal of med

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