Cardiogenic Shock
Cardiogenic Shock

Cardiogenic Shock What is Cardiogenic Shock?

Elderly woman holding onto a wall for support with her other hand on her chest.Cardiogenic shock, also known as cardiac shock, happens when your heart cannot pump enough blood and oxygen to the brain and other vital organs. This is a life-threatening emergency. It is treatable if diagnosed right away, so it’s important to know the warning signs.

Without oxygen-rich blood reaching the brain and other vital organs, your blood pressure drops, and your pulse slows. You may have symptoms such as confusion, sweating, and rapid breathing. You may also lose consciousness.

Most often the cause of cardiogenic shock is a serious heart attack. Other health problems that may lead to cardiogenic shock include heart failure, which happens when the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs; chest injuries; and blood clots in the lungs.

Treatment focuses on getting blood flowing properly and protecting organs from damage. Some people may need a heart transplant or a permanently implanted device to help keep blood flowing to the heart. If not treated quickly, cardiogenic shock can be fatal or lead to organ failure or brain injury.

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