What distinguishes a heart attack from heart failure?

Different conditions. A heart attack is an occlusion of a coronary artery that leads to no blood supply to part of the heart muscle which can lead to permanent heart damage. This can lead to heart failure which is a drop in the pumping action of the heart leading to shortness of breath, leg swelling , fatigue. This can also be caused by valvular heart disease.
Different phenomena. A "heart attack" typically means an acute occlusion of one or more or the arteries supplying blood to the heart muscle, resulting in ischemia to that portion of the heart and subsequent death of the affected heart muscle. "heart failure" means that the heart cannot adequately deliver oxygen to meet the body's needs. Heart failure has many causes and many manifestations.

Related Questions

Is a "heart failure" the same as a "heart attack"?

No. Heart attack is an injury to the heart muscle from compromised blood flow due to blockage in a coronary artery. This may or may not lead to heart failure. Heart failure occurs when the heart muscle is not able to squeeze or contract normally or is stiff and not able to relax normally and its overall pumping function is impaired. Heart attack, high blood pressure and valve problems can cause it. Read more...
Some commonality. Heart damage from coronary disease and heart attack can lead to heart failure- poor function and congestion. Read more...

What is the difference between heart attack and heart failure?

Blocked artery. Heart attacks are almost always caused by a blockage in one of the arteries that supplies the heart. This stops the flow of blood (and oxygen) to that area of the heart and eventually the involved area of muscle dies. Heart failure is most often the result of several small or one large heart attack that affects enough muscle to keep the heart from being able to pump blood effectively. Read more...
MI and CHF. Heart attack is basically a lack of blood flow to the heart muscle which if prolonged results in death of the heart muscle. Heart failure is an abnormal pump funtion of the heart. Where the heart in general doesn't pump blood out of the main chamber to the rest of the body, therefore the name heart failure. Read more...

Will death by heart failure feel the same as death by heart attack?

Not necessarily. Heart attack primarily pain or sudden death, heart failure primarily trouble breathing from fluid congestion. Read more...
No. Heart failure with shortness of breath, edema, weight gain, fatigue, cyanosis of lips. Heart pain with heart attack and may have heart failure in addition. Read more...

Please tell me, could you explain me what's the difference between heart attack and heart failure?

Heart attack. Heart attack is also called myocardial infarction. It is death of some amount of heart muscle caused by blockage of a heart artery and can result in sudden death. Heart failure is when the heart is not pumping adequately to supply the body's need for blood flow. It can be caused by heart attack or other abnormalities. Read more...

Does too much stress cause heart failure and a heart attack?

There is a known. Entity called: apical ballooning, takotsubo's or "broken heart" syndrome which can reduce heart function and mimic a heart attack which is a stress mediated process occurring due to adrenergic overload. It is treated with beta blockers & is fairly rare. Read more...

Could a specialist please explain to me what's the difference between heart attack and heart failure?

Heart Attack/Failure. Heart attack is referring to damage to the heart muscle due to lack of blood flow. Heart failure means the heart muscle doesn't work right. Heart failure can certainly occur as a consequence of damage from a heart attack. Heart failure can also occur because of damage from a viral illness, long-term damage from high blood pressure, and other reasons too lengthy to go into here. Read more...
Acute vs chronic. A heart attack [myocardial infarction (MI)] is the death of a portion of the heart muscle that occurs when the artery supplying blood closes. It happens iin minutes to hours. Heart failure is a chronic condition where the heart cannot pump enough blood for the body due to weakness from prior MIs valve disease, chemotherapy or viral infection and fluid backs up into the lungs due to failing pump. Read more...