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Study Clarifies Risky Decision Making During a Heart Attack

Nurse Talking with Senior Patient Medical Team

Researchers from the University of Oklahoma discovered that the primary delay factor in determining how quickly acute coronary syndrome patients seek help is numeracy. That is, the ability to understand and apply numerical concepts is undermined during acute coronary episodes. Researchers discovered that low patient numeracy was related to longer decision delay, which, in turn, related to higher odds of positive troponin (a protein that indicates heart damage) on arrival at the hospital. Crucially, a patient with high versus low numeracy was nearly four times more likely to seek medical attention within the critical first hour after experiencing symptoms. Read more about this study at Science Daily.