- 06 May 21
H.A.R.V. takes you on a trip inside yourself. Literally...
The way our bodies work can be confusing – until you see it for yourself. That's where Pfizer's H.A.R.V. (a Holographic Augmented Reality Videogram) comes in. From this week, H.A.R.V. is at the centre of an important new campaign – taking the public on a journey into the body, to help us understand more about stroke and Atrial Fibrillation (AF).
So, think of H.A.R.V. as your guide through an experience quite unlike any you've had before...
On atriajourney.ie, you'll find incredible 360° videos, exploring what's happening during a stroke, and how AF affects the body.
AF is a heart condition that makes your heart beat out of rhythm, and this can sometimes be fast. Some people with AF do not experience any symptoms, although a fast heartbeat may be felt (some people describe these as ‘palpitations’). Other possible symptoms include tiredness; shortness of breath; chest pain (angina); and dizziness.
The heart is made up of four chambers – the left and right atria (two upper chambers), and the left and right ventricles (two lower chambers). AF occurs when chaotic electrical activity develops in the atria, disturbing your heart’s natural rhythm. As a result, the atria don’t contract properly, which means your heart cannot pump blood as efficiently as usual.
The main risk associated with AF is stroke. As blood is not being properly pumped away from the heart, it may collect or ‘pool’ and a clot could develop in the heart. If the clot leaves the heart and enters the small blood vessels of the brain, the flow of blood may block and result in a stroke.
A stroke occurs when a blood vessel, which is carrying oxygen and nutrients to the brain, bursts or is blocked by a clot.
This causes an interruption of the blood supply to a part of the brain. This can damage or destroy brain cells which will affect body functions.
A stroke is a medical emergency. Therefore, recognising the symptoms and accessing treatment immediately can be crucial.
The Irish Heart Foundation recommends to Act F.A.S.T. when stroke strikes:
F: Facial weakness – Can the person smile? Has their mouth or eye drooped?
A: Arm weakness – Can the person raise both arms?
S: Speech problems – Can the person speak clearly and understand what you say?
T: Time – Call 999 for an ambulance if you spot any one of these signs.
You can help by spreading the word about H.A.R.V with your friends, family and loved ones – especially those over 60 years old.
For more information see atriajourney.ie