Archive - Sep 2, 2012

Archive - Sep 2, 2012

Date

aaarrrrrrrrrgh!

I wish I could reach all the newspaper and television reporters. Many say or write "heart attack" when what they mean is "cardiac arrest."

Why is this a big deal? Both are true medical emergencies, and both require bystander intervention for survival, but each is treated differently.

Most people don't die of heart attacks, unless the heart attack leads to a cardiac arrest. A cardiac arrest happens when your heart stops beating and you stop breathing. You are clinically dead. Many cardiac arrests are caused by severe heart attacks, and many are not.

A cardiac arrest is an electrical problem. A heart attack is a plumbing problem. You don't do CPR for a heart attack. You don't use therapeutic hypothermia for a heart attack.

If you see someone having a heart attack, you call 911, you let the victim assume whatever position is most comfortable, you give the victim an aspirin to chew, and you do not let the victim eat or drink anything.

Mission & Vision

The mission of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Foundation is to prevent death and disability from sudden cardiac arrest. The vision of the SCA Foundation is to increase awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and influence attitudinal and behavioral changes that will reduce mortality and morbidity from SCA.

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