Heart attack vs. Cardiac arrest

Perhaps because the majority of people are not trained medical professionals, they only think of the term “heart attack” when something goes wrong with a person’s heart. Of course there is such a thing as a heart attack, but many people mix it up when the real issue is “cardiac arrest.”

A heart attack occurs when the heart muscle is damaged, more often than not as a result of a lack of blood flow to the heart. A blood clot can form in the artery which is the blood conduit to the heart, when the clot forms it effectively cuts off the flow of blood. As the heart is starved of blood, it begins to die and the victim feels chest pains, pressure on the chest; shortness of breath and other symptoms.

Cardiac arrest on the other hand happens when the heart stops pumping, as a result the blood pressure drops and the body stops receiving blood resulting in damage to organs and eventual death of the victim. The possibility of death is high unless the victim is subjected to defibrillation by a LIFEPAK CR Plus or similar device.

In the event an individual should be struck with sudden cardiac arrest, there are really only two things that a layman can do, look around and see if there is an emergency AED, automated external defibrillator close by and start CPR and keep at it until emergency medical personnel arrive. AEDs are beginning to show up in many places where there are large groups of people, places like theme parks, sports complexes and even airplanes.

A defibrillator is a device which will basically restart the heart when it stops due to cardiac arrest. When the heart is working correctly, electrical impulses are constantly sent from the top of the heart to the bottom, the path is always the same and it is this electrical impulse that makes the heart beat.

When the heart stops beating as a result of sudden cardiac arrest, the victim is technically dead as within seconds the brain will shut down breathing. A LIFEPAK CR Plus defibrillator will stop the heart for a moment giving it time to reset and allow the heart to regain control and begin pumping blood normally.

LIFEPAK CR Plus is a portable automatic external defibrillator which exhibits minimal maintenance, simplicity of use and portability. This defibrillator is available online from AEDs Today.

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