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Hospitals: Bad Places for Heart Attacks

It turns out that one of the worst places to suffer an unexpected heart attack is while in a hospital. Based on recent studies covering over 60,000 patients and 300 hospitals, persons who’ve been hospitalized for medical problems or surgeries unrelated to heart disease who have heart attacks while there are from three to ten times more likely to die than persons who arrive at the hospital ER after having heart attacks somewhere else. Overall, some five percent of all major heart attacks in the U.S., or roughly 10,000 per year, occur to people in hospitals for unrelated reasons ranging from cancer and pneumonia to hip or knee replacement. Among the reasons: those patients are often already weakened, and their medical issues or medications may mask telltale heart attack symptoms.

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