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First things first
When someone present with no pulse, to all intents and purposes dead, you need to start Advanced life support straight away. You also need to work out the cause...
- Myocardial infarction - a bit of your heart dies. Then you die.
- Pulmonary embolism - a bit of your lungs die. Then you die.
- Cardiomyopathy - your heart gets bigger and bigger and then it just stops working and you die.
- Aortic stenosis - your aortic valve gets stiff. It makes it more likely to have emboli, and increases heart load. It also makes you die.
- Ventricular arrhythmias - your heart stops pumping properly. Then it stops pumping at all. Then you die.
- Drug toxicity (e.g. digoxin) - The drugs stop your heart. This makes you die.
- Electrolyte abnormalities - Many electrolytes such as sodium and potassium are important for making your heart work. When they are messed up, your heart doesn't work. Guess what happens then? (You die)
- Aortic dissection or aneurysm - your aorta goes bloaouroauruaaAAAUOAUGH! You then live a long and happy life, eventually passing away at the age of 172 in a car accident. Or you die.
Excellent. A large percentage of patients presenting with sudden death never have any illness ever again! They don't even have to pay council tax!