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Timely Medical Intervention – Its Importance in Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA)

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September 01st, 2013

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is a condition of the heart that is described by unconsciousness and abnormal breathing pattern due to the failure of the heart muscles to supply blood to the body. It might also lead to death, if timely medical intervention is not made.

SCA – What are the causes?

Arrhythmia or irregular heart beat is the main reason that is attributed to sudden cardiac arrest. In tachycardias, a type of Arrhythmia, the heart beat tends to be too fast, more than 100 beats per minute, whereas in bradycardia, the heart beat is too slow - less than 60 beat per minute.

Uncoordinated contraction of the muscles of the lower chamber of the heart is known as ventricular fibrillation. This causes disturbance in the synchrony between the heart beat and the pulse rate. If timely medical aid is not offered, it may consequently lead to asystole (absence of heart beat), and later death.

In order to save a person from SCA, it is critical to revive the heart to the sinus rhythm. Normal heart beat can be represented as a sine function or sinus rhythm. Any abnormality to this pattern may be an indication of heart disease. Ventricular fibrillation can be treated if and only medical intervention in the form of electric shock is provided within the time interval of 4 - 6 minutes.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) – The treatment

SCA and heart attacks are different in many respects. In the event of the occurrence of heart attack, the victim tends to experience severe chest pain but does not loose consciousness. On the other hand, SCA calls for immediate medical help as the victim does not have much time.

Described below is the course of action that needs to be followed:

Call for medical help:  According to The American Heart Association in cases like these it is vital to provide immediate medical intervention to avoid the condition from worsening. Immediately, call 911 for medical access.

CPR: Early cardio pulmonary resuscitation can prove to be extremely beneficial for the victims of SCA.

Defibrillators: Defibrillators are medical aids that help in resuscitating the heart to its normal functioning. The defibrillator delivers an electric shock to the heart muscles, which in turn stabilizes the heart beat. Automated External Defibrillator's (AEDs) are defibrillators that can be used by any untrained individual by simply following the voice instructions.

Florida Heart Group has been providing cardiovascular services since 1979. We aim to provide the best medical care to each of our patients. At Florida Heart Group, the team of well-qualified cardiology physicians and support staff understands the value of human life endeavors to assist people with cardiovascular diseases.