Management of Cardiac Arrest

Posted by e-Medical PPT Sunday, August 29, 2010
Cardiac arrest is the cessation of normal circulation of the blood due to failure of the heart to contract effectively.Cardiac arrest is a medical emergency that, in certain situations is potentially reversible if treated early. When unexpected cardiac arrest leads to death this is called sudden cardiac death (SCD).Cardiac arrest is classified into "shockable" versus "non–shockable", based upon the ECG rhythm. The two shockable rhythms are ventricular fibrillation and pulseless ventricular tachycardia while the two non–shockable rhythms are asystole and pulseless electrical activity.
Possible causes of cardiac arrest.
* Hypovolemia
* Hypoxia
* Hydrogen ions (Acidosis)
* Hypothermia
* Hypoglycemia or Hyperglycemia

* Toxins
* Cardiac Tamponade
* Tension pneumothorax
* Thrombosis (Myocardial infarction)
* Trauma

Sudden cardiac arrest is treated via attempts at resuscitation. This is usually carried out based upon Basic Life Support(BLS) / Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS).
Several organisations promote the idea of a "chain of survival"
* Early recognition -Early recognition that a cardiac arrest has occurred is key to survival
* Early CPR - improves blood and oxygen flow to vital organs and an essential component of treating a cardiac arrest.
* Early defibrillation - is effective for the management of ventricular fibrillation and pulseless ventricular tachycardia.If defibrillation is delayed the rhythm is likely to degenerate into asystole for which outcomes are worse.
* Early advanced care - Early Advanced Cardiac Life Support is the final link in the chain of survival.

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