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Gynn
06-30-2008, 06:56 AM
Not sure where to put this thread, but here goes:

Does anyone know what kind of complications or damage a person would suffer later in life (or immediately) if their heart stopped beating for ten seconds or so?

It's going to happen to a character in my WIP, and if there really is damage associated with the heart stopping, then it might make for interesting drama later down the line :)

ChaosTitan
06-30-2008, 07:06 AM
This may actually be better suited for the Story Research Forum. I'll see about getting a Super to punt you up there. :)

GeorgeK
06-30-2008, 01:28 PM
That's difficult to answer because it really would depend upon why it stopped and why it restarted. Depending upon the circumstances you could say all sorts of things from death, near death experience to strokes or even no sequelae particularly if magic is involved.

Maryn
06-30-2008, 05:27 PM
Any time my heart stops, then, I'm opting for magic. What a good plan, huh?

Maryn, smiling at George

Kitty Pryde
06-30-2008, 10:19 PM
I'm not a doctor! That said, if your heart stopped because of something sudden (line drive to the sternum, lightning strike, etc.), and then it was started again, by chance, or with a defibrillator (those nifty shocking paddles they are always busting out on tv medical dramas), it would probably not do any damage at all! They big concern with the heart stopping is brain damage. The other parts can hang on longer. The brain needs blood the most urgently and brain tissue usually starts to die without oxygen from the blood in about five minutes. Longer than that and you will end up dead or with brain damage (affecting the way your body moves and your ability to think, among other things).
I know people who have had their heart stopped briefly in surgery and they are totally fine now.

Fenika
07-01-2008, 04:12 AM
More details would definitely help us answer your question.

For one thing, I'm confused about what scenario you are considering that has the heart stop for 10 seconds- while this is not at all unreasonable, your basic CPR response takes at least 10 seconds to go through 'His heart stopped! Grab the defibrillator!' And that's assuming the defibrillator is right there. So is your guy in a hospital setting or are we talking magic or are you actually referring to arrhythmias? or?

Cheers,
Christina

Gynn
02-27-2009, 06:28 AM
I'm sorry for the incredibly huge necro, but I somehow missed this thread!

To answer the kindly posters above, an ancient creature magically stops my character's heart by pointing at him, then lets it restart after ten seconds.

MMcDonald64
02-27-2009, 05:54 PM
I'm sorry for the incredibly huge necro, but I somehow missed this thread!

To answer the kindly posters above, an ancient creature magically stops my character's heart by pointing at him, then lets it restart after ten seconds.

In that scenario, there would probably be no lasting effects. (unless he hits his head when he falls to the ground or something.)

Rarri
02-27-2009, 06:00 PM
Hearts can stop and people can 'die' for several minutes but be ok for all intents and purposes. Repercussions tend to become more severe the longer someone's heart isn't beating due to lack of oxygen. Ten seconds would be unlikely to have any lasting effect. Ten minutes however would.

RJK
02-27-2009, 08:02 PM
I'm not a doctor but I don't think 10 seconds would even put the person under stress. If the wizard were to stop his heart and breathing for a minute, I'd be getting panicky, but even that wouldn't cause any real damage.

Bufty
02-27-2009, 08:06 PM
I'm sorry for the incredibly huge necro, but I somehow missed this thread!

To answer the kindly posters above, an ancient creature magically stops my character's heart by pointing at him, then lets it restart after ten seconds.


Why stop his heart at all?

That's not impressive to anyone - even a bystander wouldn't know what had been done -other than a pointing finger had caused the fellow to fold up. Is it meant to create an impression? Ten seconds is a fraction of what most folk can hold their breath for.

Raise him a foot off the ground instead....? :Shrug:

Gynn
03-02-2009, 01:12 AM
Why stop his heart at all?

That's not impressive to anyone - even a bystander wouldn't know what had been done -other than a pointing finger had caused the fellow to fold up. Is it meant to create an impression? Ten seconds is a fraction of what most folk can hold their breath for.

Raise him a foot off the ground instead....? :Shrug:

Well, there's no bystanders. It's just my MC and the creature whom he offended. After reading everyone's opinion, I think I'll change it so that he can't breathe for a minute or something like that.

Thanks for the help, guys!

JrFFKacy
03-02-2009, 05:56 AM
Ten seconds is nothing!

Speaking from a CPR Certified Firefighter (not an Emergency First Responder yet) standpoint, and quoting info I just read from the Red Cross First-Aid: The Vital Link book:
0-4 minutes after going into cardiac arrest- clinical death
4-6 minutes-brain damage possible
6-10 minutes-brain damage likely
10+minutes - biological death.

If we roll onto a scene and the patient has been in cardiac arrest for more than ten minutes, there's not much we can do.

De-fibs are great things though. Just as an interesting side-note, when a person goes into cardiac arrest (their heart stops), they probably still have some electrical activity going on in their heart, only it's so messed up that the heart isn't pumping blood anymore. If a trained person can hook the patient up to a defibrilator quickly enough, the de-fib can detect those odd electrical charges and will advise the operator to admister a shock. Hopefully, the shock will 'shock' the heart into resuming a normal rythmn.

If you want the re-starting of the heart to be dramatic, you better plan on the cardiac arrest lasting for AT LEAST two or three minutes. Honestly, if I was the reader, I'd like to see the MC biologically dead, then brought back to life, but that's just my opinion.

Oh, if you go into respiratory arrest (not breathing), such as when you're choking, you have 45 seconds before you'll pass out and at least a minute or two before you heart will stop (sorry, I forget those numbers).

JrFF

GeorgeK
03-02-2009, 05:24 PM
Ten seconds is nothing!
JrFF

That depends upon how you look at it. If the demon is just trying to get the character's attention, it would work. There most likely would be no permanent damage, but the person would still feel like crap for a couple months and would remember what did it, and that it can do it again. The demon is trying to get the attention of the character, not the doctors or paramedics. I think 10 seconds is a good lenght for the plot. Longer than that and the person probably will wind up on a stretcher somewhere and everyone would say, "Oh, ignore that. That was just an anoxia induced hallucination."

Remember, that if the demon wants the person to do something, it wouldn't serve the demon's purpose to maim them first or do anything that others will encourage the person to ignore.

JrFFKacy
03-03-2009, 06:18 PM
Yeah, I guess if it was more of a 'scare tactic' if you will, ten seconds would be fine. As long as the character knows his heart has been stopped for those ten seconds. Respiratory arrest would be much more dramatic on the character's side of things.

I guess I'm just saying that if a person's heart stops in real life, they're totally unaware of everything. I heard one story in a first-aid course of a guy who was walking through an airport, decided his stomach felt a little upset, then woke up in the hospital hours later. It turned out that he'd had a heart attack, collapsed and a paramedic had grabbed the de-fib box and revived him. He wasn't aware of any of that until he was told later.