Cardiac arrest, often referred to as sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), is a medical emergency in which the heart suddenly stops beating, and blood is not pumped to the rest of the body.
It is a life-threatening condition that requires immediate intervention to prevent death. Here are some key points about cardiac arrest:
// Electrical Dysfunction:
Cardiac arrest typically occurs when there is a sudden, electrical malfunction in the heart. This malfunction disrupts the heart’s normal rhythm (usually ventricular fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia), causing it to stop pumping blood effectively.
// No Pulse:
During cardiac arrest, the person loses consciousness, and there is no pulse or heartbeat. This means that oxygen-rich blood is not being circulated to vital organs, including the brain.
Cardiac arrest can have various underlying causes, including:
- Coronary artery disease (blocked or narrowed blood vessels that supply the heart).
- Heart attack (myocardial infarction).
- Arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms).
- Cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle).
- Electrical abnormalities in the heart.
- Trauma or injury to the chest.
- Drug overdose.
- Severe electrolyte imbalances.
- Suffocation or drowning.
Cardiac arrest usually occurs suddenly and without warning. Common symptoms include sudden loss of responsiveness, no normal pulse or breathing, and gasping for breath (agonal breathing).
Cardiac arrest is a medical emergency, and immediate action is crucial. The primary treatment is cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to manually pump blood to vital organs and artificial ventilation to provide oxygen. Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) can also be used to deliver an electrical shock to the heart to try to…