Sudden Cardiac Death

Understanding and treating long QT syndrome

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I recently read that long QT syndrome is quite common. What is it, and how is it diagnosed? I have read that fainting may be one sign of the disorder. Can long QT syndrome be treated?

Jan 04, 2018
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Sudden Cardiac Death is natural death from cardiac causes, heralded by abrupt loss of consciousness within one hour of the onset of acute symptoms. Other forms of sudden death may be noncardiac in origin. Examples of this include respiratory arrest (such as due to airway obstruction, which may be seen in cases of choking or asphyxiation), toxicity or poisoning, anaphylaxis, or trauma.

It is important to make a distinction between this term and the related term cardiac arrest, which refers to cessation of cardiac pump function which may be reversible. The phrase sudden cardiac death is a public health concept incorporating the features of natural, rapid, and unexpected. It does not specifically refer to the mechanism or cause of death.

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