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Cardiac Emergencies

Robert J. Henning, MD
JAMA. 1978;240(12):1282. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290120076038.
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Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death today in the United States. Recognizing this problem, Dr Dean Mason and colleagues have compiled current information on the diagnosis, pathophysiology, and treatment of the primary cardiovascular emergencies encountered by the practicing physician.

The proper techniques for cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the therapy of acute heart block are carefully described. The signs and symptoms of acute myocardial infarction are differentiated from dissecting thoracic aneurysm, pulmonary embolism, and thoracic chest wall pain. Experience with the pharmacologic manipulation of preload, afterload, and contractility, as well as the use of mechanical cardiac assist devices in the treatment of congestive heart failure and cardiogenic shock, are thoroughly reported. An excellent chapter discusses the pathophysiology of acute pulmonary edema, which commonly follows notable elevation of pulmonary capillary pressure, but which may also occur with fluid overload, pulmonary embolism, pulmonary aspiration, narcotic overdose, and diffuse capillary leakage. The evaluation


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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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