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IJBH. 2018; 6(2): 110-119

Sudden Cardiac Deaths

Nabil Naser, Nura Hadziomerovic.


Background: Cardiovascular diseases are the cause of 17 million deaths a year worldwide, of which 25% are sudden cardiac deaths (SCD). Sudden cardiac death is an unexpected death caused by a heart disorder, which occurs in a short period (usually within the first hour after the onset of symptoms) in a person with known or unknown heart disease, but the time and manner of death are unexpected. Objective: The main purpose of this article was to provide an integrated, synthesized overview of the current state of knowledge about SCD. Methods: This professional paper contains up to date description of the most im-portant aspects of SCD, epidemiology, definition, etiology, pathogenesis, clinical presentation, treatment, and prevention. Results and discussion: The hypothesis that most cases of SCD will seemingly occur at random in an apparently healthy or at least very low-risk population The risk of sudden cardiac death is higher for males and the elderly. The causes of sudden cardiac death can be divided into two large groups. The first group includes ischemic causes that lead to malignant arrhythmias, and consequently to sudden cardiac death. In younger people, non-ischemic causes often lead to sudden cardiac death. Inherited car-diac disorders comprise a substantial proportion of SCD cases aged 40 years and less. This includes the primary arrhythmogenic disorders such as long QT syndromes and inherited cardiomyopathies, and the less common causes are myocarditis and intoxication. These arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathies can be di-vided into two groups: structural cardiomyopathies (in which we find macroscopic changes in the heart) and ion channel disorders or channelopathy. Conclusion: The main cause of SCD in general population is coronary artery disease, in addition the causes of SCD in the young can be broadly classified into struc-tural heart disease (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, dilated cardiomyopathy, anomalous coronary artery, arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy and myocarditis) or primary arrhythmogenic diseases (Brugada syndrome, Wolff-Parkinson White syndrome, long QT syndrome and catecholaminergic poly-morphic ventricular tachycardia). Patients were more likely to survive when the arrest happened in public places where the EMS has faster access. Effective primary prevention of ischemic heart disease would best prevent SCD, also the cardiac screening in young individuals with family history of SCD is highly recommended.

Key words: Sudden Cardiac Death (SCD), Cardiovascular Diseases (CDV), Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS), Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD)

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