SOVEREIGN, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SOVEREIGN, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Heart attack. Electrocardiogram (ECG) of electrical activity (red trace) in a man's heart during a heart attack (myocardial infarction). The ECG trace shows long, sustained contractions of the heart, which manifests as intense chest pain. The condition is caused by lack of blood supply to the heart muscle, which then starts to die from lack of oxygen to sustain its continuous activity. A common cause of heart attacks is blockages of the coronary arteries that supply the heart muscle with blood. If the patient survives, heart bypass surgery or coronary angioplasty can restore the blood supply. An ECG is obtained by using electrodes to detect the electrical activity of the heart.
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