Mechanisms of sudden cardiac death

Academic Article


  • Sudden cardiac death (SCD) continues to be a major public health problem and is thought to account for almost half of all cardiac deaths. Cardiac arrest and SCD are most commonly due to ventricular arrhythmias. Most patients who suffer cardiac arrest have underlying structural heart disease, with coronary artery disease (CAD) being the most common. In the setting of CAD, ventricular arrhythmias can result due to acute ischemia in the absence of preexisting myocardial scarring or in the presence of established scar from prior infarction without clinically significant ischemia. LV systolic dysfunction is an important predictor of risk for SCD in ischemic heart disease and in most nonischemic disorders, although other factors such as ventricular hypertrophy also play a role. Cardiac arrest and SCD can also occur due to primary electrical disorders in the absence of major structural abnormalities.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 19725932
  • Author List

  • McElwee SK; Velasco A; Doppalapudi H
  • Start Page

  • 1368
  • End Page

  • 1379
  • Volume

  • 23
  • Issue

  • 6