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Heart & Vascular Heart Attack Care

Heart Attack Care

​​Regional Level 1 Heart Attack Care

SSM Health St. Mary's Hospital - Madison participates in the South Central Region of Wisconsin STEMI Care Initiative known as the Level 1 Program. This multidisciplinary initiative was developed through the collaborative efforts of SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital - Madison, Meriter Hospital and UW Hospital in Madison, Wis. The program uses partnerships with emergency service providers and regional hospitals to eliminate delays and expedite treatment for patients experiencing a heart attack within our community. 

Once a heart attack is identified, recommended best practice is to provide coronary catheterization as quickly as possible. ​

SSM Health St. Mary's staff and emergency personnel are highly trained in the care of heart attack patients. They follow guidelines set forth by the South Central Region of Wisconsin STEMI Care Coordinators, as well as best practice recommendations from the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology.

Recognizing Heart Attack Symptoms

During a heart attack,  the heart muscle begins to die due to lack of blood flow to it. Symptoms can include:

  • Discomfort
  • Pressure
  • Heaviness
  • Pain in the chest, arm or below the breast bone
  • Fullness, indigestion or choking feeling (make feel like heartburn)
  • Sweating
  • Nausea, vomiting or dizziness
  • Extreme weakness
  • Anxiety
  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid or irregular heart beats

During a heart attack, symptoms last 30 minutes or longer and are not relieved by rest or oral medications. Initial symptoms can start as a mild discomfort that progresses to significant pain.


If you are having chest pain or other heart attack symptoms, call 911 immediately.​