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Cardiac Arrest? Someday, Drones May Come to Your Rescue

Posted 11 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 13, 2017 – Drones have been proposed for some pretty mundane uses, such as delivering pizzas or packages, but new research suggests the high-flying machines could be used to swoop in and save lives. Swedish researchers think drones can quickly deliver defibrillators to someone whose heart has suddenly stopped beating. "Each minute that passes after a sudden cardiac arrest decreases the chance of survival by approximately 10 percent," explained lead investigator Andreas Claesson. He's a paramedic with the Center for Resuscitation Science at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. "In rural areas, a drone carrying an AED [automated external defibrillator] could arrive far ahead – meaning 16 minutes [faster] – of emergency medical services," he said. And that, Claesson said, could "potentially save lives through earlier defibrillation as carried out by bystanders onsite." ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Attack, Arrhythmia, Myocardial Infarction, Heart Block, Asystole, Cardiogenic Shock, Post MI Syndrome

Heart Devices 101: Guide to the Tools That Keep You Ticking

Posted 3 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

SUNDAY, April 2, 2017 – Pacemakers, defibrillators and other medical devices have saved the lives of millions of people worldwide. Someone you know probably has received one of these heart-health enhancers, although not all have become household words. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration evaluates and regulates these and other medical devices in the United States. Below, the agency provides a brief glossary of terms that might come in handy when a doctor recommends a cardiac tool: Heart pacemakers: These small, battery-powered devices are implanted in the body. They deliver an electric shock to restore normal heart rhythm when the heart beats too slowly. Implantable cardioverter defibrillators: These deliver a shock to restore normal heart rhythm when the heart beats too fast. Automated external defibrillators: These portable, automatic devices are found in many public locations. ... Read more

Related support groups: Atrial Fibrillation, Heart Disease, Heart Attack, Arrhythmia, Heart Failure, Congestive Heart Failure, Angina, Tachyarrhythmia, Supraventricular Tachycardia, Prevention of Thromboembolism in Atrial Fibrillation, Prosthetic Heart Valves, Myocardial Infarction, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Mitral Valve Prolapse, Ventricular Tachycardia, Prosthetic Heart Valves - Mechanical Valves, Mitral Insufficiency, Left Ventricular Dysfunction, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), Atrial Flutter

ATMs, Coffee Shops Ideal Spots for Heart Defibrillators

Posted 20 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 20, 2017 – ATMs and coffee shops may be among the best spots to place lifesaving defibrillators, a new study suggests. Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are devices that can be used by a layperson to restart the heart of someone in cardiac arrest. But to do that, they have to be readily accessible. The new study tried to locate where AEDs could potentially save the most lives. Focusing on Toronto, the Canadian researchers found that many of the city's cardiac arrest emergencies happened near coffee shop chains, such as Tim Hortons and Starbucks, and ATMs connected to large banks. In fact, those businesses accounted for eight of the top 10 hot spots. While the study looked only at Toronto, lead researcher Timothy Chan thinks the findings would likely extend to other cities. Both ATMs and chain coffee shops are ubiquitous, said Chan, who directs the University of ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Attack, Myocardial Infarction, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Heart Block, Cardiac Arrest, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis

MRIs Can Be Safe for People With Heart Devices …

Posted 23 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22, 2017 – People with pacemakers or implantable defibrillators have long been told they can't undergo MRI scans. But a new study suggests that it can be safely done – under the right conditions. The study, published in the Feb. 23 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, focused on patients with standard heart devices not designed to be MRI-compatible. The study found that even for them, an MRI can be safely performed, when a specific protocol is followed. "I think this really opens a door for these patients to have an MRI when medically indicated," said lead researcher Dr. Robert Russo, of the Scripps Research Institute, in La Jolla, Calif. The big caveat, though, is that patients in the study were all screened and went through a specific protocol. An expert in cardiac devices – a doctor, physician's assistant or nurse practitioner – had to be present during ... Read more

Related support groups: Cardiac Arrhythmia, Heart Block, Ischemic Heart Disease, Body Imaging

Too Many Public Defibrillators Out of Reach When Needed

Posted 15 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 15, 2016 – Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) placed in public spaces can save the lives of people in cardiac arrest. However, a new Canadian study finds too many of the devices are in buildings that aren't always open, so bystanders can't get them when needed. The study, "serves as a vivid reminder that 24/7/365 access to AEDs is as important as their widespread placement," said one specialist who reviewed the findings, Dr. Howard Levite. He directs cardiology at Staten Island University Hospital in New York City. More AEDs in public spaces, along with timely access, is imperative, he said, because "the potential to improve survival in cardiac arrest is an opportunity that cannot be ignored." Cardiac arrest differs from a heart attack, and occurs when the heart abruptly stops beating. According to the American College of Cardiology (ACC), over 400,000 cases of ... Read more

Related support groups: Atrial Fibrillation, Heart Attack, Arrhythmia, Myocardial Infarction, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Ventricular Tachycardia, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Bradyarrhythmia, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Heart Block, Ventricular Arrhythmia, AV Heart Block, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis, Post MI Syndrome

Sudden Heart Death More Common in Male Minority Athletes

Posted 29 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 28, 2016 – It's always surprising and heartbreaking to hear about a young athlete dying suddenly. Now a new study finds that in many of these cases, an underlying heart problem was already present. The researchers found that about one-third of sudden cardiac deaths were caused by the heart condition hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. This condition causes a portion of the heart's wall to grow abnormally thick, which hinders the heart's performance. There are often no symptoms, study authors said. This heart condition is often inherited, according to the American Heart Association. About 40 percent of sudden deaths in males were caused by hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. More than 50 percent of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy occurred in minority males. Just 1 percent of these cases were found in minority females, the study published in The American Journal of Medicine found. "We have ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Heart Block, Abnormal Electrocardiogram

Delaying 2nd Shock After Cardiac Arrest Won't Boost Survival: Study

Posted 7 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, April 7, 2016 – Delaying a second shock to the heart in hospital patients with cardiac arrest doesn't improve their chances of survival, suggests a new study that challenges current recommendations. A patient undergoing cardiac arrest needs to be treated with a defibrillator, which sends an electric shock to the heart to restore normal heart rhythm, according to the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Guidelines introduced in 2005 recommend delaying a second shock after the first one to allow time for chest compressions. But evidence to support that advice has been lacking, the study authors said. The authors – led by Dr. Steven Bradley of the VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System in Denver – looked at data on the time between first and second defibrillation attempts. The study included more than 2,700 cardiac arrest patients from 172 U.S. hospitals. About 25 ... Read more

Related support groups: Arrhythmia, Ventricular Fibrillation, Heart Block, AV Heart Block, Cardiogenic Shock

Women in Cardiac Arrest May Be Less Likely to Receive Help

Posted 8 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 8, 2016 – Women are less likely than men to be helped by bystanders if they suffer cardiac arrest, a new study finds. "There is a misconception that women don't have heart problems so they don't get as much help from the public and they are not treated the same by doctors," said study author Dr. Nicole Karam. She is an interventional cardiologist at the European Hospital Georges Pompidou in Paris. Researchers reviewed records of more than 11,400 people who had a cardiac arrest in public areas in and around Paris between 2011 and 2014. Cardiac arrest, the sudden loss of heart function, is often caused by abnormal heart rhythms. It is not the same as a heart attack. Even though bystanders were more likely to be present when women suffered cardiac arrest, researchers found only 60 percent of women received basic life support – such CPR and use of an automated external ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Heart Attack, Arrhythmia, Myocardial Infarction, Heart Block, AV Heart Block, Cardiovascular Conditions and Disorders, Cardiogenic Shock, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis, Abnormal Electrocardiogram

Sudden Cardiac Arrest May Not Be So Sudden

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – Sudden cardiac arrest may not be as sudden as doctors have thought, researchers report. Roughly half of cardiac arrest patients experience telltale warning signs that their heart is in danger of stopping in the month preceding their attack, new study findings suggest. Those symptoms can include any combination of chest pain and pressure, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, and flu-like sensations (such as nausea, back pain and/or abdominal pain), the researchers said. The problem: less than one in five of those who experience symptoms actually reach out for potentially lifesaving emergency medical assistance, the investigators found. "Most people who have a sudden cardiac arrest will not make it out alive," warned study co-author Dr. Sumeet Chugh, associate director of the Heart Institute and director of the Heart Rhythm Center at Cedars-Sinai Medical ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Heart Attack, Myocardial Infarction, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Heart Block, Ischemic Heart Disease, Asystole, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis, Post MI Syndrome

Make CPR, Defibrillator Training Mandatory for High School Graduation: Experts

Posted 30 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 30, 2015 – Far too few Americans are surviving cardiac arrest, and a new report issued Tuesday by a federally appointed panel of experts sets out ways to boost survival rates. One recommendation: Make a working knowledge of CPR and the use of an automated electronic defibrillator (AED) a graduation requirement for all middle- and high-school students. One expert in emergency care applauded the proposal. "By teaching laypersons in public settings the proper use of such devices, we may be able to effectively increase survival rates from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest," said Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. According to the new Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, less than 6 percent of the 395,000 Americans who suffer cardiac arrest outside a hospital each year will survive. And even in a hospital setting, cardiac arrest ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Heart Attack, Myocardial Infarction, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Heart Block, Cardiovascular Conditions and Disorders, Ischemic Heart Disease, Asystole, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis

Can Smartphones Interfere With Pacemakers?

Posted 22 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 22, 2015 – Another study suggests that smartphones should be kept a safe distance from implanted cardiac devices like pacemakers and defibrillators, in the rare chance that signaling "interference" occurs. "Nearly everyone uses smartphones and there is the possibility of interference with a cardiac device if you come too close," study senior author Christof Kolb, prior head of electrophysiology at the German Heart Centre, said in a news release from the European Society of Cardiology (ESC). This doesn't mean that people with implanted cardiac devices need to toss their phones away, however. "Patients with a cardiac device can use a smartphone," Kolb said. "But they should not place it directly over the cardiac device. That means not storing it in a pocket above the cardiac device. They should also hold their smartphone to the ear opposite to the side of the device ... Read more

Related support groups: Arrhythmia, Tachyarrhythmia, Supraventricular Tachycardia, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Ventricular Tachycardia, Heart Block, Ventricular Fibrillation, Ventricular Arrhythmia, Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia, Atrial Tachycardia, Sinus Node Dysfunction, Paroxysmal Junctional Tachycardia

Test Endurance Athletes for Heart Woes While They Exercise: Study

Posted 3 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 3, 2015 – Endurance athletes should be tested for potentially deadly heart rhythm problems when they are exercising rather than resting, and the tests should include the right ventricle as well as the left ventricle, a new study says. Some athletes who participate in endurance events such as marathons and triathlons may have heart rhythm disorders (arrhythmias) that can cause sudden death. A team of researchers from Australia and Belgium found that important signs of rhythm problems in the heart's right ventricle can only be detected during exercise, according to the study published June 3 in the European Heart Journal. Currently, most routine assessments of athletes with suspected heart rhythm problems are done when the patients are resting, and the focus is on the left ventricle, the investigators said. "You do not test a racing car while it is sitting in the garage. ... Read more

Related support groups: Atrial Fibrillation, Heart Disease, Arrhythmia, Tachyarrhythmia, Supraventricular Tachycardia, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Ventricular Tachycardia, Bradyarrhythmia, Heart Block, Ventricular Arrhythmia, AV Heart Block, Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia, Ischemic Heart Disease, Atrial Tachycardia, Abnormal Electrocardiogram

COPD Tied to Raised Risk for Sudden Cardiac Death

Posted 29 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 – Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is already the third leading cause of death in the world, and a new European study finds the respiratory illness might also raise a person's odds for sudden cardiac death. COPD is a progressive and incurable illness that involves a combination of emphysema and bronchitis, and is often tied to smoking. The researchers said that the disease has already been associated with an increased risk of heart disease and sudden cardiac death in certain high-risk patient populations. Now, the new study "shows that COPD is a risk indicator for sudden cardiac death in the general population, and that the risk increases with COPD severity," wrote a team led by Dr. Lies Lahousse, a postdoctoral researcher at Ghent University Hospital in Belgium. One expert in the United States said that even though the study can't prove that COPD ... Read more

Related support groups: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Atrial Fibrillation, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Heart Block

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