Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Prevention
The time it takes for help and treatment to occur is a life and death situation during SCA. Ninety-five percent of those who experience SCA die because they do not receive life-saving defibrillation within four to six minutes, before brain and permanent death begin to occur.
- Know the signs of SCA and react quickly. SCA strikes immediately and without warning. Victims will fall to the ground/collapse, become unresponsive and will not breathe normally, if at all.
- Call 911 as soon as possible.
- Start CPR as quickly as possible. If you donât know CPR, conduct Hands-Onlyâ¢ CPR, which is providing chest compressions by pushing hard and fast in the middle of the victimâs chest with minimal interruptions at approximately 100 beats per minute (or hum the Bee Gees song âStaying Aliveâ). Studies of real emergencies have shown Hands-onlyâ¢Â CPRÂ , to be equally or more effective than conventional CPR.
- If available, use an automated external defibrillator (AED) as soon as possible. AEDs are a computerized medical device that can check a personâs heart rhythm and recognize and deliver a shock to a heart that needs it.
- Live a healthy lifestyleÂ âÂ exercise regularly, eat healthy foods, maintain a healthy weight and avoid smoking.
- Treat and monitor all health conditions including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Ask a doctor about ejection fraction monitoring to determine if there is a risk.
- Control or stop abnormal heart rhythms that may trigger life-threatening arrhythmias through proper medication, implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs), and in some, cases surgical procedures.
- Know family heart history and understand the risks for other cardiovascular-related conditions, like heart failure. Communicate these to a physician.Â