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Cardiac Arrest, Heart Attack or Heart Failure? Dr. Basu Ray Explains the Difference

Oct 3, 2017
Dr. Indranill Basu Ray

A cardiac arrest is caused when the heart’s electrical system malfunctions. The heart stops working properly and cannot pump blood to the brain, lungs and other organs. It can be precipitated by abnormal or irregular heart rhythms like ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation can also lead to cardiac arrest if it leads to Ventricular fibrillation.
A heart attack is also referred to as a myocardial infarction and happens when blood vessels supplying nutrition to the heart are blocked, and thus blood can no longer get to the heart. If the artery is not opened quickly, the heart begins to die.
Heart failure symptoms usually develop over time. The heart keeps working, but it is not strong enough to meet your body’s need for blood and oxygen. If left untreated, it may progress to end stage heart failure and lead to death. Atrial fibrillation that is uncontrolled or untreated can lead to heart failure as are other causes including heart attack.

Dr. Indranill Basu Ray specializes in Cardiac Electrophysiology at CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute, where he practices with the largest and most diverse network of cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons in Arkansas. CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute has more than 30 locations across the state, providing Arkansas residents with better access to quality cardiology care, no matter where they live.

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