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• It is the cessation of effective pumping
action of the heart wherein the electro-
conduction of the heart suddenly stops
due to cardiac related disorders.
• When this happens, blood stops flowing
into the brain and vitals organs which in
turn will cause death to a person within
minutes if untreated.
• Irreversible brain damage can occur within
ten minutes if arrest is not treated.

* About 95% of people who experiences

cardiac arrest die, most within minutes
• Most cases of cardiac arrest are due to
ventricular fibrillation and other
electrical related problems of the heart
such as CAD and MI.
• Other causes may include the following:
• Physical stress
• Inherited problems (LQTS)
• Structural changes in the
heart (cardiomegaly)
Completely blocks
blood flow
• Coronary Artery Disease

Build up reduces
blood flow then

Causes electrical signals to

spread abnormally thereby
causing arrhythmia
• Myocardial Infarction
•Physical Stress
• Certain types of physical stress can cause the
heart's electrical system to fail. Examples
ü Intense physical activity. The hormone
adrenaline is released during intense
physical activity. This hormone can
trigger CA in people who have other
heart problems.
ü Very low blood levels of potassium or
magnesium. (These minerals play an
important role in your heart's
electrical signaling).
ü Major blood loss. (surgical operations)
ü Severe lack of oxygen.

Inherited Disorders

• LQTS (Long QT syndrome)

Ø is a disorder of the heart's electrical
activity due to problems with tiny
pores on the surface of heart
muscle cells. LQTS can cause
sudden, uncontrollable, dangerous
heart rhythms.
• Septal Defects
Ø Patent ductus arteriosus
Ø Atrial septal defect
Ø Ventricular septal defect
v Many cases of CA in children are due to
these problems.

Non cardiac causes

• 35% of SCDs are related to non cardiac

causes. The most common non–cardiac
causes were: trauma, non-trauma related
bleeding (such as gastrointestinal
bleeding, aortic rupture, and intracranial
hemorrhage), overdose, drowning and
pulmonary embolism.

Non cardiac causes the “ H’s”

• Hypovolemia - A lack of blood volume

• Hypoxia - A lack of oxygen
• Hydrogen ions (Acidosis) - An abnormal pH
in the body
• Hyperkalemia or Hypokalemia - Both excess
and inadequate potassium can be life-
• Hypothermia - A low core body temperature
• Hypoglycemia or Hyperglycemia - Low or
high blood glucose

Non cardiac causes the “ T’s”

• Tablets or Toxins
• Cardiac Tamponade - Fluid building around
the heart
• Tension pneumothorax - A collapsed lung
• Thrombosis (CVA) - stroke
• Thromboembolism (Pulmonary embolism) -
A blood clot in the lung
• Trauma

Risk Factors
• Persons with heart problems
• Obesity
• Cigarette smoking
• Drug abusers and excessive alcohol
• Affects men twice as often as women and
those aging 35-45 years old.

v CA in children is rare unless they have
inherited heart conditions.
Signs and Symptoms
• Usually, the first sign of cardiac arrest is
loss of consciousness (fainting). At the
same time, no heartbeat (or pulse) can
be felt.

• Some people may experience the
following prior to loss of
ü a racing heartbeat (tachycardia)
ü feeling dizzy or lightheadedness
ü chest pain
ü shortness of breath
ü nausea and vomiting.
• Cardiac arrest is rarely diagnosed before
it can happen or as it is happening due
to the fact that it can occur without

• Instead it is diagnosed after the incident
through series of laboratory exams and
by ruling out other causes of a person’s
sudden collapse.
Diagnostic Test

• EKG (electrocardiogram)
• Echocardiography
• Cardiac MRI
• Cardiac Catheterization
• Blood tests
Diagnostic Test
Ø Painless procedure that records
the electrical activity of the heart,
used to detect and locate the
source of several heart
Ø It also shows the rhythm and
strength of the heart to pump
Diagnostic Test
• Echocardiogram
Ø is a painless test that uses sound
waves to create pictures of the
heart. It provides the doctor with
information about the size and
shape of the heart and how well
the heart's chambers and valves
are working.
Ø The test also can find areas of heart
muscle that aren't contracting
normally due to poor blood flow or
injury from a previous heart

Diagnostic Test

• Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging

Ø is a safe procedure that uses radio
waves and magnets to create
detailed pictures of the heart.
The test creates images of the
heart as it is beating, producing
both still and moving pictures of
the heart and major blood

Diagnostic Test
• Cardiac catheterization
Ø is a procedure used to diagnose and
treat certain heart conditions. A
long, thin, flexible tube (catheter) is
put into a blood vessel in an arm,
groin or neck and threaded to the
heart. Through the catheter, the
doctor can do diagnostic tests and
treatments on the heart.

v Sometimes a special dye is put into the catheter to

make the inside of the heart and blood vessels
show up on x rays. The dye can show whether
plaque has narrowed or blocked any coronary
Diagnostic Test
• In addition the patient may have blood
tests to check the levels of potassium,
magnesium, and other chemicals in the
blood that play an important role in the
heart's electrical signaling.
Ø Troponin T/I
Ø CPK-MB Used to diagnose MI

• Emergency Treatment includes the
Ø Use of defibrilator (AED)
qAEDs unlike the
conventional defibrilator,
are programmed devices
with command features
that tells the rescuer what
to do, thereby reducing the
risk of giving too much
electric shock.
Ø CPR- cardio pulmonary
Ø Emergency drugs e.g. epinephrine
• Treatment in the hospital depends on
the cause of cardiac arrest but
generally will include the following:
Ø Cardiac drugs- beta blockers
Ø Sympathomimetic drugs-
Ø Catecholamines- dopamine

vThe latter two drugs are used to

control hypertension and may be
given as adjuncts via continuous
intravenous drip.
Prevention is better than CURE
• Lifestyle changes
Ø Daily regular exercise
Ø Avoidance of foods high in sodium,
trans fat, & sugar
Ø Stay within your caloric levels and
increase intake of fruits and
Ø Maintain appropriate weight by
balancing intake and activity
Ø Quit smoking and excessive alcohol