What is cardiac arrest?
The heart stops pumping blood for the various requirements of the body in cardiac arrest. Therefore cardiac arrest is a sudden stop in effective blood flow due to the failure of the heart to contract effectively. It can be an unexpected and sudden loss of heart function, breathing and consciousness. It may lead to sudden death without much intervention. A cardiac arrest can be immediate, drastic and without warning.
No normal breathing
As mentioned earlier, the heart stops pumping blood all of a sudden in cardiac arrest. The brain will be deprived of blood in a few seconds. The body will stop taking breath suddenly as the respiratory centre in the brain cannot work without oxygen. There will be a sudden lose in response from the person. The skin may show signs of paleness or bluishness.
Gasping for breath is also called agonal respirations. It is the abnormal breathing pattern as a reflex of the body to breathe after the heart stop functioning. The gasps can include strange sounds like groaning or snoring also. It will be sporadic but not effective. It is not equal to regular breathing and immediate medical support should be provided.
Signs similar to heart attack
One may experience certain signs of cardiac arrest before the actual arrival, which is similar to heart attack. It includes:
What causes cardiac arrest?
Cardiac arrest occurs when the heart abruptly stops beating due to a various reasons. Mostly, cardiac arrest occurs because of the irregularity of heartbeat which is referred to as arrhythmia.
The immediate cause can be an irregularity with the electrical system of the heart and the heart has its own electrical stimulator. The possible causes of cardiac arrest include:
You are at a higher risk of cardiac arrest if you have:
Cardiac arrest is a life
Cardiac arrest is a life-threatening emergency which needs medical attention within minutes. If someone gets a cardiac arrest, CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation should be given fast in order to save life. Each second counts as cardiac arrest can be reversible if medical care is sought at the earliest.
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