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What Are The Differences Between A Heart Attack and Cardiac Arrest

Heart attack

A heart attack is when the blood flow to a part of the heart is blocked. This can happen when a coronary artery becomes narrowed or blocked by a blood clot. When this happens, the heart muscle is deprived of oxygen and begins to die.

The symptoms of a heart attack can vary depending on which part of the heart is affected. However, some common symptoms include:

  • Chest pain or discomfort

  • Shortness of breath

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Sweating

  • Dizziness or lightheadedness

  • Fatigue

  • Pain in the jaw, neck, or shoulders

If you think you are having a heart attack, it is important to call 911 immediately. Early treatment can help to prevent permanent damage to the heart.


Cardiac arrest

Cardiac arrest is when the heart stops beating. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including a heart attack, an arrhythmia, or a stroke. When the heart stops beating, the brain and other organs do not get enough oxygen and begin to die.

The symptoms of cardiac arrest can vary depending on the cause. However, some common symptoms include:

  • Sudden collapse

  • Unconsciousness

  • No pulse

  • No breathing

If you think someone is having a cardiac arrest, it is important to call 911 immediately. Early treatment can help to save lives.

Differences between a heart attack and cardiac arrest

The main difference between a heart attack and cardiac arrest is that a heart attack is a circulation problem, while cardiac arrest is an electrical problem. A heart attack occurs when a coronary artery becomes blocked, which prevents blood from flowing to the heart muscle. This can cause the heart muscle to die. A cardiac arrest occurs when the heart's electrical system malfunctions, which causes the heart to stop beating.

Another difference is that a heart attack can be treated with medication or surgery, while cardiac arrest usually requires immediate CPR and defibrillation.


Risk factors for heart attack and cardiac arrest

The risk factors for heart attack and cardiac arrest are similar. Some of the most common risk factors include:

  • Age

  • Gender

  • Family history

  • Smoking

  • High blood pressure

  • High cholesterol

  • Diabetes

  • Obesity

If you have any of these risk factors, it is important to talk to your doctor about ways to reduce your risk of having a heart attack or cardiac arrest.

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