Sunday June 29th 2014

- Patients stories

Donald F. Seemann

ICD for Ventricular Fibrillation

    Syndicated Columnist Judy Foreman

    On undergoing Catheter Ablation.

    Former Vice-President Richard Cheney

Why former Vice President Richard Cheney has an ICD.

    Author Deborah Daw Heffernan

    Living with an ICD.

    Roger Blanchette

    Sudden Cardiac Death, a survivor's story.

    Lawrence Beckmen

After frightening episodes of fainting, Lawrence Beckmen's healthy and happy lifestyle was restored.

    Sebastian Hitzig

    Millions of patients have been helped by pacemakers and ICDs. No story is as remarkable as that of Sebastian Hitzig.


Health Articles on Heart

How to have a healthy heart?

Arrhymia diet

Heart safe supplements vs unhealthy supplements

Can Anti aging medicine keep heart young?

The role of heart in erectile health?

Heart rate and Body metabolism





The Normal Heart
signs and symptoms
Heart Diseases &Disorders
Substances Causing Arrhythmia

Risk Factors and Preventionon


Ejection Fraction

Atrial Fibrilliation

Atrial Fibrillation causes

Non cardiovascular syncope

Patients quiz


Heart structure

Cardiac arrest

Tests for heart failure

Tilt table

Too fast heart beat

Long QT syndrome

Heart failure prevention

Heart failure risks

What to ask your doctor?

When to see a specialist?

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Sudden Cardiac Death (Cardiac Arrest)

Sudden Cardiac Death (SCD), or Cardiac Arrest, kills half of all people who die of heart disease, the Number One cause of death in the United States, accounting for more than 400,000 deaths each year. SCD is a catastrophe in which the heart abruptly and without warning ceases to function. It is particularly terrifying because it kills its victims within minutes and often occurs in outwardly healthy people who have no known heart disease.

No statistics are available for the exact number of cardiac arrests that occur each year. It's estimated, however, that more than 95 percent of victims die before reaching the hospital.

Heart Attack, or myocardial infarction (MI), is a "plumbing problem" caused by clogged or blocked blood vessels that cut off the supply of blood to the heart.

The most common cause of SCD is a heart rhythm disorder (arrhythmia) called ventricular fibrillation (VF). VF is an "electrical problem" in the heart. Suddenly, the electrical signals that regulate the pumping action of the lower chambers of the heart (ventricles) become rapid and chaotic. The normal rhythmic contractions of the ventricles stop, and the heart can't pump blood to the rest of the body. The brain is starved of oxygen, and the individual loses consciousness in seconds. 

Without immediate emergency help, death follows within minutes of an episode of ventricular fibrillation.

How Can More Lives be Saved?

The best hope for saving the lives of people who experience sudden cardiac arrest is delivery within minutes of an electric shock to restore the heart's normal rhythm. The treatment is called defibrillation or cardioversion, and may be administered with an emergency device called an external defibrillator, which delivers a brief, high-energy shock through paddles or electrode patches applied to the patient's chest.

Portable, automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) are now available that are relatively inexpensive and easy to use. Many cities now equip their police forces with these devices, and they are increasingly available on airplanes and in public buildings.

For certain patients who are at particularly high risk, implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) are the most successful therapy to prevent sudden cardiac death. ICDs are pacemaker-like devices that are implanted under the skin. 

The ICD continually monitors the heart, and automatically delivers an electric shock if it detects ventricular tachycardia (VT), a rapid heart beat in the ventricles that often leads to ventricular fibrillation and near-certain death.

Identifying Risk Factors & Predicting Who is At Risk

Even with more widespread availability of defibrillators in public places, hundreds of thousands of people will continue to die of cardiac arrest. The best way to significantly reduce deaths is to identify people who are at highest risk for cardiac arrest and take steps to prevent it.

Cardiac arrest in News

Recreational drugs and heart problems - Over the past decade some scientists have suggested adrenaline could do more harm than good. There is some evidence it may damage the brain by reducing blood supply to the head and could diminish the chances of survival. Same goes for drugs used for recreational purposes like EnzyteViagra, levitra  

Consumers are advised to use safer alternatives to recreational drugs.

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