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Difference between Heart attack and Cardiac Arrest

Heart Attack and Cardiac Arrest are frequently used synonymously although they do not mean the same thing. When the heart's blood supply is cut off, a heart attack occurs. When the heart experiences a malfunction, it can suffer from sudden cardiac arrest. Sudden cardiac arrest is an "electrical" issue, whereas a heart attack is a "circulation" issue.

Difference between Heart attack and Cardiac Arrest

Problems in the body's circulatory system that obstruct blood flow to the heart are what cause a heart attack. Coronary artery disease is the primary cause of heart attacks. Your risk may rise because of your age, lifestyle choices including diet and exercise, and other health issues. Heart attacks are frequent in the United States. Reliable Source. The electrical system of the heart breaks down during a cardiac arrest. Usually, arrhythmias that mess with the heart's rhythm and electrical system are to blame. When the heart's rhythm stops, a cardiac arrest occurs.

Heart attack

When an artery constricts, oxygen-rich blood cannot reach a specific region of the heart and causes a heart attack. If the blocked artery is not quickly opened, the portion of the heart normally supplied by it begins to die. The more harm is done, the longer a person stays without treatment. A heart attack can develop slowly with minor symptoms or suddenly and severely. It is crucial to remember that a heart attack can still occur even if there are just minor symptoms or none. The heart normally continues to beat during a heart attack, unlike with abrupt cardiac arrest. The signs of a heart attack in women can differ from those in men.

What are the symptoms of heart attack?

The main symptoms of a heart attack are given below-

  1. Chest discomfort or agony Left- or centre-sided chest pain that lasts for more than a few minutes or that comes and goes is the primary indicator of a heart attack. The discomfort may feel like a sharp pressure, a tightening, a fullness, or another unfavourable sensation.
  2. Feeling flimsy, dizzy, or faint. Additionally, you can start to sweat a lot.
  3. Jaw, neck, or back ache or pain.
  4. Aches or pain in one or both shoulders and arms.
  5. Breathing difficulties. Although it typically happens in conjunction with chest discomfort, shortness of breath can occur before it.

When to contact a physician

If you think you are experiencing a heart attack, get immediate medical attention. Do the following:

  1. Suggest getting emergency medical help. As soon as you suspect a heart attack, dial your local emergency number. If you do not have access to emergency care, ask someone to drive you to the closest hospital. Only drive oneself unless there are no other options.
  2. If nitro-glycerine has been prescribed for you by a doctor, take it. Take it as instructed while you wait for help.
  3. Take aspirin if it is recommended.
  4. Aspirin usage during a heart attack may minimise cardiac damage because it prevents blood clotting.
  5. Other drugs and aspirin may interact. Do not take an aspirin if neither your doctor nor the emergency professionals recommend it. Immediately after taking an aspirin, dial your local emergency number. Call emergency services first.

How to respond to a patient who is experiencing a heart attack?

When a person is unconscious and you believe they are having a heart attack, dial 911 or your local emergency number first. Next, check to see whether you can feel the person's breathing and pulse. Only if the person is not breathing or you cannot detect their pulse should CPR be initiated.

  1. If you do not have any CPR training, perform hands-only CPR. This suggests that the chest should be compressed fast and firmly at a rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute.
  2. If you have received CPR training and feel competent in performing it, begin by performing thirty chest compressions followed by two rescue breaths.

Heart attack: What to do

Even if you are not sure it is a heart attack, call 911 or your emergency response number. Every moment matters! It is advised to dial EMS and proceed immediately to the emergency room. Staff from the emergency medical services can start providing care as soon as they get there, up to an hour sooner than if someone were to drive to the hospital. Additionally, EMS personnel are taught how to revive a person whose heart has stopped. Patients with chest discomfort who arrive by ambulance can also benefit from quicker hospital treatment.

What is cardiac arrest?

Unexpectedly and quickly, sudden cardiac arrest happens. An irregular heartbeat results from an electrical problem in the heart (arrhythmia). The heart is unable to pump blood to the brain, lungs, or other organs when its pumping activity is hindered. The victim then loses consciousness and stops having a pulse. Without medical attention, the patient will pass away in a matter of minutes.

Signs for Cardiac arrest?

In more than half of cases, sudden cardiac arrest happens with no prior symptoms. Suspected signs of sudden cardiac arrest include:

  1. A pounding heartbeat
  2. Chest ache.
  3. Dizziness.
  4. Light-headedness.
  5. Breathing problems.
  6. Experiencing nausea and throwing up.
  7. Losing consciousness

What causes a sudden cardiac arrest?

Abnormal heart rhythms known as arrhythmias are the main cause of sudden cardiac arrest. The most common arrhythmia that poses a threat to life is ventricular fibrillation. This erratic, disorganised impulse emanating from the ventricles of one's heart (lower chambers). One's heart is unable to pump blood when this occurs. If mistreated, one could pass away in a matter of minutes. Coronary heart disease is one of the additional reasons of sudden cardiac arrest.

  1. Heart problems that have existed from conception.
  2. Modifications to your heart's structure brought on by illness or infection.
  3. Persistent physical effort or bleeding.

What are the risk factors of sudden cardiac arrest?

Risk of sudden cardiac mortality and sudden cardiac arrest can increase due to a variety of circumstances. The two main risk factors are as follows:

  1. Previous heart attack: Your risk of sudden cardiac death is highest in the first six months after a heart attack. 75% of sudden cardiac deaths are caused by a previous heart attack, according to medical authorities.
  2. Coronary artery disease: Risk factors for coronary artery disease include smoking, having a family history of cardiovascular illness, having high cholesterol, and having an enlarged heart. Coronary artery disease is a factor in 80% of sudden cardiac deaths.

Other risk factors include:

  1. A previous instance of a cardiac arrest.
  2. A history of sudden cardiac death or arrest in the family.
  3. A personal or family history of certain irregular heart rhythms, such as ventricular tachycardia, long QT syndrome, and Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome.
  4. Ventricular fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia following a cardiac arrest.
  5. Congenital cardiac issues or blood vessel anomalies in the past (since birth).
  6. A history of syncope (fainting episodes of unknown cause).
  7. Heart failure (a condition where your heart's capacity to pump blood is reduced). Ventricular arrhythmias that might result in sudden cardiac arrest are 6 to 9 times more common in patients with heart failure than in the general population.
  8. Dilated cardiomyopathy (approximately 10% of heart fatalities occur suddenly). Your risk of experiencing irregular heart rhythms, which eventually result in heart attacks, rises because of scarring and damage to your heart muscle.
  9. Hypertrophy in cardiomyopathy (a thickened heart muscle that especially affects your ventricles).
  10. Significant changes in the blood's potassium and magnesium levels.
  11. Weight gain.
  12. Type 2 Diabetes
  13. Using drugs for entertainment.
  14. Using "pro-arrhythmic" drugs may increase your risk of developing life-threatening arrhythmias.

What to do during sudden Cardiac Arrest

Adults should first make sure they are responsive before shouting for aid. Next, dial local emergency number to summon emergency medical assistance. If an automatic external defibrillator is available, call for it or retrieve it, and use it right away. Start performing proper CPR right away and continue doing so until trained emergency medical personnel arrive. If there are two individuals available to assist, one should start CPR right away while the other dials local emergency number and locates an AED.

Heart arrest in children and new-borns is frequently brought on by airway blockage. High-quality CPR should begin as soon as the emergency response is activated by dialling local emergency number. When assistance is close by or a cell phone is available, starting CPR and initiating the emergency response can happen simultaneously. The most frequent cause of cardiac arrest is respiratory arrest, though, and in an out-of-hospital situation, aid may not be close by. Therefore, a single rescuer without access to a cell phone should begin CPR (compressions-airway breathing) before leaving the baby or toddler and phoning for help. Rescuers should utilise an automated external defibrillator (AED) if the victim fainted suddenly since quick defibrillation can save lived. You can double or even triple a victim's probability of life by administering Hands-Only CPR while the iconic disco tune "Stayin' Alive" is playing.

What is the link?

These two various heart problems are related. During recuperation or after a heart attack, sudden cardiac arrest can happen. Sudden cardiac arrest is more likely to occur after a heart attack. Although many heart attacks may not result in sudden cardiac arrest right away, heart attacks are frequently the cause of sudden cardiac arrest. Sudden cardiac arrest can also result from other heart disorders that alter the heart's rhythm. These include lengthy Q-T syndrome, ventricular fibrillation, heart failure, thickening heart muscle (cardiomyopathy), and arrhythmias.

Difference between Heart Attack and Cardiac arrest

Heart attack Cardiac arrest
The obstruction of a coronary artery in the heart is the most common cause of heart attacks. The heart typically stops beating during a cardiac arrest for a variety of reasons.
Blood clots that form in the arteries are the main reason that people have heart attacks. The heart stops during cardiac arrests, which results in heart failure from ventricular fibrillation.
Heart attacks can be brought on by a number of different things, such as shock, hypothermia, and drowning. On the other side, heart attacks can potentially result in cardiac arrests.
Chest pain, loss of breath, wheezing, and coughing are signs of a heart attack. No pulse, loss of breath, and unconsciousness are signs of a cardiac arrest.
Most heart attack victims are smokers and people who eat poorly. Additionally, victims of cardiac arrest may be obese and inactive adults.

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