• acute myocardial infarction;
  • heart attack;
  • knowledge;
  • risk factors;
  • symptoms;
  • Thailand

Poomsrikaew O, Ryan CJ, Zerwic JJ. International Journal of Nursing Practice 2010; 16: 492–498 Knowledge of heart attack symptoms and risk factors among native Thais: A street-intercept survey method

This study aimed to determine Thais' knowledge of heart attack symptoms and risk factors and whether that knowledge was related to age, gender or education. Via a street-intercept survey method, a convenience sample of people aged ≥ 35 years (n = 192) was recruited. Mean age was 47 ± 9.6 years (range 35–81), and 55.2% were female. Participants identified on average 5.6 of 9 heart attack symptoms (SD 1.8) and 5.3 of 8 heart attack risk factors (SD 2.1). However, 66.7% mistakenly thought the chest discomfort would be severe, sharp and stabbing, and many subjects erroneously selected symptoms that are actually stroke symptoms. There were no gender or educational differences in knowledge of heart attack symptoms and risk factors. Older adults recognized fewer total symptoms than did younger adults. These findings could direct health-care providers to help the Thai population differentiate symptoms of heart attack from stroke.