Attack and arrest are probably the most mortally feared words relating to the heart! We want to avoid these words at all costs! While the words ‘heart-attack’ and ‘cardiac arrest’ have commonly been used interchangeably and also as synonyms, they are two different conditions. What are the early signs that you can watch out for?
What is Cardiac arrest?
In cardiac arrest, the heart abruptly stops beating. It is very unexpected and sudden, and hence leads to abrupt loss of function of the heart, breathing included. “Cardiac arrest occurs suddenly within fraction of seconds and often without warning. It is the electrical malfunction in the heart that causes irregular heartbeat and seconds later the person loses consciousness and has no pulse.” stated Famous Cardiac surgeon Devi Prasad Shetty.
Cardiac arrest or heart attack... What is the difference?
A heart attack occurs when blocked artery(s) prevent oxygen rich in blood from reaching any section of the Heart. “If the blocked artery is not reopened quickly, the part of the heart normally nourished by that artery begins to die”, stated Turkish-American cardiothoracic surgeon Mehmet Cengiz Oz. Not every Heart attack leads to sudden cardiac arrest. When cardiac arrest occurs, attack is a common cause.
Symptoms of Cardiac arrest-
- Dizziness that never goes away,
- Shortness of Breath,
- Chest pain will occur 3-4 weeks before the cardiac arrest,
- Sudden collapse and stop breathing,
- The person will be unconscious.