Heart attack Vs Cardiac arrest: Know difference from Cardiologists

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In last few days, several incidents have come to light where man suddenly fell due to attack and died. In an incident from Bareilly of Uttar Pradesh, a 48-year-old man died after he suddenly fell while dancing during a birthday party. Yogesh Gupta, a resident of Jammu, collapsed and died on stage in the middle of his performance.

No, it is not always heart attack, says Dr (Prof) Tarun Kumar, Professor of Cardiology, RML Hospital. While talking to IANS, he said, “We hear people make these statements often interchangeably when someone has a heart condition. But they are not synonyms”.
“A heart attack is when blood flow to the heart is blocked, while sudden cardiac arrest is when the heart malfunctions and suddenly stops beating unexpectedly. A heart attack is a “circulation” problem and sudden cardiac arrest is an “electrical” problem”, explained Dr Kumar.
Sudden cardiac arrest can occur after a heart attack, or during the recovery. Heart attacks increase the risk for sudden cardiac arrest. Most heart attacks do not lead to sudden cardiac arrest. But when sudden cardiac arrest occurs, heart attack is a common cause, he said.
Dr Kumar said further that other heart conditions may also disrupt the heart’s rhythm and lead to sudden cardiac arrest. These include a thickened heart muscle (cardiomyopathy), heart failure, arrhythmias, particularly ventricular fibrillation, and long Q-T syndrome. He added further that the Cardiac arrest is reversible if it is treated within a few minutes. Call for emergency medical services and Begin CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation) immediately and continue until professional emergency medical services arrive.
By performing hands CPR, the chances of survival rises to double or triple fold and by stander CPR, it can prove lifesaving in out of hospital cardiac arrest, he said.
On the rise of such cases post Covid era, he said this is mainly because of two reasons firstly, because of increase in the incidence of cardiac arrest or heart attack in general population as the physical activity was reduced during the Covid era and even after that and secondly, because of wide availability of mobile phone with camera or CCTV footage, such incidents in no time come to internet and gone viral, Dr Kumar said.