Victims of cardiac arrest usually appear healthy and seldom show any heart-related conditions. Research shows that about 350,000 people suffer from cardiac arrest while away from the hospital. This is quite risky because those who suffer from cardiac arrest while away from the hospital have a low chance of survival. A victim who receives CPR from a passersby doubles or triples their chances of survival. Anyone looking for CPR online classes should register and take the course because it might save someone’s life.
It is, however, unfortunate that most cardiac arrest victims don’t usually receive CPR from bystanders. An essential factor for cardiac arrest victims usually depends on receiving immediate CPR. Victims that have to wait for the arrival of an ambulance have very slim chances of survival. The importance of CPR in saving one's life cannot be overestimated, which is why those looking for CPR online classes should enroll now.
Sudden Cardiac Arrest
The heart functions due to electric pulses, and it uses a natural pacemaker, which is known as the SA node. The node is responsible for sending electrical signals to the other cells in the heart muscle. The signal initiates key processes that allow the different chambers of the heart to contract and expand hence allowing the pumping of blood at regular intervals. The electrical signals are in charge of controlling the rate of the heart hence increasing or decreasing the heart rate depending on the level of activity.
Though the heart rate can increase or slow down, it is important to maintain a steady heart rate regardless of activity level. The occurrence of a cardiac arrest is as a result of a malfunction disrupting the electrical system of the heart. The malfunction causes an irregular heartbeat, which in turn affects the normal flow of blood to the brain and the rest of the body. Unfortunately, the body is capable of only a few seconds of such interruptions before the victim becomes unconscious. A person who has suffered cardiac arrest has no pulse and might die within minutes if nothing is done.
Cardiac arrest can be caused by a number of conditions that include drug overdose, blood loss, drowning, major physical trauma, or asphyxia.
Is a Heart Attack Different from Cardiac Arrest?
Most people often confuse a heart attack and cardiac arrest, but the two conditions are quite different. A heart attack usually occurs as a result of reduced blood flow to the heart due to a blocked artery. If the blockage on the artery is not dealt with, then the specific part that receives blood from the affected artery starts to die.
There are heart attacks that appear similar to cardiac arrest because they can occur suddenly and be very intense. On the other hand, heart attacks can sometimes be very mild, with spread-out symptoms that appear over a few days or weeks. Another critical difference between a heart attack and cardiac arrest is that a heart attack victim has a pulse. It is important to note that the symptoms of heart attack differ depending on the gender of the victim.
In most cases, heart attacks are as a result of atherosclerosis. This is a condition characterized by the build-up of plaque in the arteries due to the build-up of cholesterol in the blood. Different from cardiac arrest, heart attack victims usually suffer from coronary heart disease. Heart attacks can also be due to coronary artery spasms, which interfere with the blood flow in an artery. The spasms can be experienced by patients who do not suffer from coronary heart disease. Other notable causes of heart attacks are being exposed to extremely low temperatures, drugs, stress, and extreme pain.
Though cardiac arrest and heart attacks are different, they are usually related. This is because a victim of a heart attack is at a high risk of experiencing sudden cardiac arrest while in the recovery stage.
Impact of CPR on Sudden Cardiac
The fatal nature of sudden cardiac arrest is because of the lack of a pulse means that the brain quickly loses its normal supply of oxygen present in the blood. In such a situation, the victim is at risk of suffering brain damage and even death within minutes. This is why immediate CPR is important to such victims because it is a matter of life and death.
What usually happens during a CPR process is that the rescuers become the heartbeat of the victim. The chest compressions administered to the victim cause the squeezing of blood from the heart and transport it to the rest of the body hence providing oxygenated blood. Rescuers then have to stop the chest compressions and begin rescue breathing, which causes the blood pressure to drop. Every time the chest compressions stop to offer the victim rescue breaths, the process of recovering blood flow begins again.