Heart to Heart
Heart to Heart

After surviving a rare coronary artery dissection and massive heart attack while nine months pregnant, Nefertari has devoted her life to uplifting other heart patients and promoting heart health awareness.

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I normally write about the disabling effects of my heart attack. However, the event that caused my heart attack was sudden coronary artery dissection (SCAD). SCAD is a rare event that happens to women. Most of us that are afflicted by SCAD are generally in good shape, of normal stature, and within childbearing age.

Perhaps the most devastating part of this usually fatal disease is that it’s usually seen during or near pregnancy.

Although SCAD is very rare, it does occur. And it’s important to be aware of because some doctors may mistake SCAD symptoms for gall bladder stones. This is especially true if a doctor doesn't prescribe the proper tests for a patient who reports chest-related symptoms (pain, tightness, or heaviness). SCAD occurs when the coronary artery tears and causes a blockage which leads to a heart attack.

My hopes are that researchers and doctors can find a cause long before my own daughters are married and ready to start their own families. I'm not sure why, but my grandmother passed away two years after my mother was born, which is typical of SCAD. If my suspicions are correct and my grandmother died of SCAD, then it could signal a genetic link. It would be so helpful to know the causes of SCAD so that all mothers could prepare their daughters of this dangerous health threath.

Talking about SCAD is my way of helping to raise awareness. It is my goal to make sure that no newborn babies go home without their mommy because of SCAD.

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Tags: Talking to Your Doctor , Warning Signs , Relationships after Near-Tragedy , Pregnancy , Women

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About the Author

After surviving a heart attack, Nefertari has devoted her life to promoting heart health awareness.

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