How to Help Someone Having Heart Attack [Video}

How to Help Someone Having Heart Attack



  • Heart failure is the inability of the heart to maintain adequate cardiac output to meet the metabolic needs of the body because of impaired pumping ability.
  • Diminished cardiac output results in inadequate peripheral tissue perfusion.
  • Congestion of the lungs and periphery may occur; the client can develop acute pulmonary edema.

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  • Acute heart failure occurs suddenly.
  • Chronic heart failure develops over time; however, a client with chronic heart failure can develop an acute episode.

Types of heart failure

  • Right ventricular failure, left ventricular failure
    • Because the two ventricles of the heart represent two separate pumping systems, it is possible for one to fail alone for a short period.
    • Most heart failure begins with left ventricular failure and progresses to failure of both ventricles.
    • Acute pulmonary edema, a medical emergency, results from left ventricular failure.
    • If pulmonary edema is not treated, death will occur from suffocation because the client literally drowns in his or her own fluids.
  • Forward failure, backward failure
    • In forward failure, an inadequate output of the affected ventricle causes decreased perfusion to vital organs.
    • In backward failure, blood backs up behind the affected ventricle, causing increased pressure in the atrium behind the affected ventricle.
  • Low output, high output
    • In low-output failure, not enough cardiac output is available to meet the demands of the body.
    • High-output failure occurs when a condition causes the heart to work harder to meet the
  • demands of the body.
  • Systolic failure, diastolic failure
    • Systolic failure leads to problems with contraction and ejection of blood.
    • Diastolic failure leads to problems with the heart relaxing and filling with blood.

Compensatory mechanisms

  • Compensatory mechanisms act to restore cardiac output to near-normal levels.
  • Initially, these mechanisms increase cardiac output; however, they eventually have a damaging effect on pump action.


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