The terms “heart attack” and “cardiac arrest” are completely different terms, so understanding the differences between the two can help save lives.
It’s more like a plumbing problem. It happens when there’s a sudden blockage in the blood vessels of the heart. So it happens when the heart muscle that’s supplied by blood and oxygen through that vessel all of a sudden is deprived from that blood supply. If you’ve ever had a heart attack, you’re at greater risk for cardiac arrest or sudden cardiac death.
It’s an electrical problem of the lower chamber of the heart which is supposed to pump blood to the rest of the body. Because of a sudden onset of electrical disturbances that make the heart muscle quiver, the heart doesn’t pump anything to the brain and to the rest of the body. So a heart attack is caused by a blockage and cardiac arrest is caused by an electrical disturbance.
Either way if you see someone collapse, it doesn’t matter which one has happened, you need to start CPR and have someone get the closest automatic external defibrillator or AED. More people now know how to use the AED, because every minute that passes without resuscitation decreases by at least 10% the chances of this patient making it through. The best way to reduce your risk of heart attack or cardiac arrest is to control your risk factors. These factors include high blood pressure, diabetes and smoking. A healthy diet and staying fit are your best bet when it comes to your heart.
It’s also called congestive heart failure – a condition where the heart cannot pump enough blood to the entire body. This is a chronic condition that can develop suddenly. Heart failure can affect your right side, left side and/or both sides of the heart. Right-sided heart failure means that your right ventricle of the heart loses its ability to pump blood. Left-sided heart failure means you heart loses its ability to pump blood rich in oxygen from the left side of the heart to other parts of the body.
Heart failure can be categorized into systolic or diastolic. Systolic means your heart cannot pump or eject blood, and diastolic means that blood cannot be filled up in your heart anymore. When you are active or work out, having one of these heart failure problems makes your heart unable to pump enough blood out to the remainder of the body.