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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

American Heart Association is Correct

According to the AHA the best way for a person to survive a cardiac arrest (that's when your heart stops) is CPR and early defibrillation (that's when paramedics or doctors shock you).

We got a call for a man with chest pain. When we got there he found a 61 year old man with crushing chest pain that woke him up this morning. While we were talking to him to he rolled his eyes into the back of his head ans suddenly went unconscious. All the paramedics in the room quickly looked at the monitor and saw that he was in V-fibrillation (ventricular fibrillation is a lethal condition in which your heart just quivers instead of beating). We quickly checked a pulse and verified that our patient had indeed just died. We then put the patches on and defibrillated him. At this point our patient woke up and asked us if we knew what had just happened. We checked the heart monitor and he was once again in a normal rhythm. We had no further complication with him and the hospital rushed him right into the CathLab to break up the clot that was causing him to have the massive heart attack.

It's rare, but nice, to see our patients recover that quickly from death.
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