Cardiac Arrest And Heart Attack

What’s the difference between a heart attack and cardiac arrest?

Although a heart attack can lead to a cardiac arrest, they are not the same thing.

A heart attack is a sudden interruption to the blood supply to part of the heart muscle. It is likely to cause chest pain and permanent damage to the heart.  The heart is still sending blood around the body and the person remains conscious and is still breathing.

A cardiac arrest occurs when the heart suddenly stops pumping blood around the body.  Someone who is having a cardiac arrest will suddenly lose consciousness and will stop breathing or stop breathing normally.  Unless immediately treated by CPR this always leads to death within minutes.

A person having a heart attack is at high risk of experiencing a cardiac arrest.

Both a heart attack and a cardiac arrest are life-threatening medical emergencies and require immediate medical help.


Can you recover from a cardiac arrest?

It is possible to survive and recover from a cardiac arrest, if you get the right treatment quickly.

VF can sometimes be corrected by giving an electric shock through the chest wall, by using a device called a defibrillator.

This can be done in the ambulance, or at hospital, or it can be done by a member of the public at the scene of a cardiac arrest if there is a community defibrillator nearby.

Immediate CPR can be used to keep oxygen circulating around the body until a defibrillator can be used and/or until the ambulance arrives.


Ref: British Heart Foundation

Cardiac arrest

Cardiac arrest


A cardiac arrest happens when your heart stops pumping blood around your body.

If someone has suddenly collapsed, is not breathing normally and is unresponsive, they are in cardiac arrest.

There is no time to lose. Even if you are untrained your actions can help.

Causes a cardiac arrest.

The most common cause of a cardiac arrest is a life threatening abnormal heart rhythm called ventricular fibrillation (VF).

Ventricular fibrillation happens when the electrical activity of your heart becomes so chaotic that the heart stops pumping and quivers or ‘fibrillates’ instead. There are various causes of VF. These can be problems with your heart, or other causes.

Can you recover from a cardiac arrest?

It is possible to survive and recover from a cardiac arrest, if you get the right treatment quickly.

VF can sometimes be corrected by giving an electric shock through the chest wall, by using a device called a defibrillator.

This can be done in the ambulance, or at hospital, or it can be done by a member of the public at the scene of a cardiac arrest if there is a community defibrillator nearby.

Immediate CPR can be used to keep oxygen circulating around the body until a defibrillator can be used and/or until the ambulance arrives.


Ref : British Heart Foundation


Menopause and Type 2 Diabetes

Menopause is a topic that often generates a lot of opinions from women ÔÇö those who welcome it and those who dread it. ThereÔÇÖs also a lot of discussion about whether itÔÇÖs something that should be ÔÇ£treatedÔÇØ or left to occur naturally, without any medications.

For some women, menopause is more than just the end of their child-bearing years. It can have a profound effect on chronic illnesses such astype 2 diabetes. Women with diabetes often have to be more aware of the changes than most other women.

Type 2 Diabetes and Menopause: Changes Within ÔÇ£the ChangeÔÇØ

If you usually ovulate every 28 days or so, you may have wide variations as you approach menopause. You may have cycles that go 40 days or longer between periods and at other times find that your periods come only a couple of weeks apart. While this is happening, the levels of your hormones, estrogen and progesterone, are changing quite a bit, too. These hormonal changes can affect your blood glucose levels, which for women with type 2 diabetes could cause problems.

To avoid complications from type 2 diabetes, itÔÇÖs essential to keep your blood glucose levels as even as possible ÔÇö something that can be tricky during menopause.

Type 2 Diabetes and Menopause: Recognizing Menopause Symptoms

Some symptoms of menopause could be confused with signs of too high ortoo low blood glucose, including dizziness, sweating, and irritability. With symptoms being so similar, it may be hard for a woman to tell which is which. Rather than guessing, you should check your blood glucose levels when youÔÇÖre experiencing these signs. If the symptoms persist or get more uncomfortable, try talking to your doctor about treatment options.

Women with type 2 diabetes who are overweight may undergo menopause later than their type 1 diabetes peers. ItÔÇÖs been found that estrogen levels in women who are overweight drop more slowly than those who are underweight or of normal weight.

Type 2 Diabetes and Menopause: At the Onset

Menopause is also a time when women who didnÔÇÖt know they had type 2 diabetes may first be diagnosed with it. Brian Tulloch, MD, an endocrinologist at Park Plaza Hospital and Medical Center and clinical associate professor at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston, explains, ÔÇ£The biggest issue here is with certain minorities who have a three- to five-fold higher chances of having type 2 diabetes.ÔÇØ Hispanics, for example, have a higher rate of diabetes than whites, he says. Add to this higher genetic risk the frequency of obesity and the decline of physical activity, and you see why so many women are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes as they begin the onset of menopause.

Type 2 Diabetes and Menopause: Health Complications

Women with type 2 diabetes who have gone through menopause may no longer have wild hormonal swings affecting blood glucose levels, but they do have other health issues to keep in mind. They are at higher risk of developing atherosclerosis, the hardening and thickening of the artery walls that can lead to stroke or heart attack. Weight gain after menopause isnÔÇÖt unusual, but it seems to be more common among women with type 2 diabetes. This adds to the risk of heart disease.

With menopause and a more sedentary lifestyle comes another risk: osteoporosis, the bone-thinning disease. While women with type 2 diabetes arenÔÇÖt at as high a risk of osteoporosis as those with type 1 diabetes, they do have a higher risk of breaking bones than a menopausal woman who does not have diabetes.

Type 2 Diabetes and Menopause: Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT), or hormone therapy, after menopause remains a controversial topic, but could be an option for women with type 2 diabetes who are experiencing difficult menopause signs and having trouble keeping their blood glucose under control.

Studies on HRT safety after menopause have conflicting results, but some doctors seem to be coming around to favoring hormone use again, albeit in a more careful manner. Says Dr. Tulloch, ÔÇ£ThereÔÇÖs now a tendency to go against what was believed five years ago, when [the WomenÔÇÖs Health Initiative study of post-menopausal hormone use] suggested post-menopausal estrogen wasnÔÇÖt such a good idea. I think the pendulum has swung back the other way.ÔÇØ

However, not all doctors agree with this. The general consensus is that a woman should begin HRT only if her symptoms, such as hot flashes, are severe and canÔÇÖt be managed any other way. If a woman chooses not to go on HRT, she should discuss her diabetes medication with her doctor, as she may need a lower dose than she was on before menopause. Be sure to discuss your individual situation with your own doctor to come to the best course for your well-being.

Menopause involves change for every woman; working with your medical team at this important life passage will help you make the healthiest transition.

Ref : Everydayhealth

Dangers of self-medication

Popping pills without a doctor’s prescription, even if the ailment is minor, could have serious repercussions, warns medical expert, Lalitha Suppiah

We often pop pills for common ailments like fever, colds, cough and headache, without bothering to consult a doctor . Self-medication, even for minor ailments, could lead to medical complications. A large number of potent drugs such as pain relievers, cough remedies, anti-allergies , laxatives, antibiotics, antacids and vitamins are sold over-the-counter (OTC). Selfmedication with OTC medicines could cause allergy, habituation, and addiction. For example, excessive use of vitamins can cause hypervitaminosis , or vitamin poisoning. Antimicrobial resistance is a worldwide problem, particularly in India where antibiotics are often available without a prescription. The dangers of self-medication could include the following:

Misdiagnosing the illness:

A minor health issue which could be resolved easily with the doctor’s advice may become a major problem over time. Symptoms may subside temporarily with self-medication , but it would become difficult for a doctor to correctly diagnose and treat later.


You could become addicted to prescription drugs such as antacids, cough syrups and pain relievers.

Allergic reactions:

Some antibiotics such as penicillin or sulpha drugs can cause severe reactions in the body for some people. These could be fatal.

Insufficient dosage:

Incorrect dosage of medicines will not cure and will prolong recovery. On the other hand, over-dosage may damage liver , kidneys and other organs. Indiscriminate use of antibiotics : These could, over a long time, lead to antimicrobial resistance . Consequently, the antibiotic may become ineffective when taken in the future.

Risk of stroke:

The most commonly misused medicines are painkillers. Analgesics can induce gastritis and can also increase risk of stroke by four times in patients with high BP.


Drug interactions:


Some herbal drugs and medicines may cause drug-to-drug interactions and adversely affect the body.


Self-medication by pregnant women:

This could adversely affect the unborn child causing congenital anomalies and birth defects. Unlike other facets of selfcare , self-medication involves the intake of drugs, which have the potential to be beneficial or harmful . Their improper use can have serious health implications, especially among children, the aged, and in people with special physiological conditions such as pregnancy and lactation. The government and health authorities must ensure that only safe drugs are made available OTC. Consumers should be given adequate information about their u

When someone has a heart attack…

If immediate first-aid is not given to a heart attack patient, there may be permanent damage or a cardiac arrest.

Heart attack is one of the leading causes of death the world over. Most of these deaths take place, because proper first-aid or medical attention is not given between the time the person has the attack and the time the person reaches a hospital. That is why it is important for everyone to know how and what to do, as soon as a person is suspected to have had a heart attack.

Remember the following:
Every moment is precious in case of heart attack, so act fast. Do not leave the person alone and don’t try to manage at home. Do not give anything orally. Even if he feels little better, lift him to reach the nearest hospital as early as possible.There is no household remedy for heart attack. Keep him in lying down posture, loosen his clothing and rush him to the nearest hospital. Make him chew one full tablet of apirin and swallow.

Give him one Sorbitrate tablet under the tongue. If there is profuse sweating, ie, drop in blood pressure, then don’t give it.
You can give glucose powder in spoonful dosages on or under the tongue frequently. Don’t give sweet drinks.

If short of breath, then recline the patient partially and make him cough intermittently.

If the person is unconscious and unresponsive, CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation) should be performed. Give chest thrust and mouth-to-mouth respiration.

Do not depend on the first-aid to benefit. Reach the nearest facility, which has ICU or advanced treatment facilities for heart