Sexual partners shun CPR: Fewer than one in five men survive sex heart-attacks sex because their partners are reluctant to give the life-saving technique
- Only a third of cases that occurred during intercourse received ‘bystander CPR’
- This accounted for 20% of patients who survived to hospital discharge
- Statistics come from 13-year study of 4,500 sudden cardiac arrests in Oregon
- The technique has been found to double the chance of survival
- Findings highlight importance of educating public on CPR method
- Read on for a step-by-step guide to carrying it out by British Heart Foundation
Fewer than one in five men who suffer a cardiac arrest during sex survive, according to new research.
This is because their partner does not know how to perform a simple, life saving technique, say scientists.
It underlines the importance of teaching CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) to the general population, they warned.
Sex is known to trigger a sudden cardiac arrest and this causes the heart to suddenly stop beating. It usually occurs without warning.
The 13-year study of more than 4,500 sudden cardiac arrests (SCAs) in Portland, Oregon, found only a third of cases that occurred during intercourse received ‘bystander CPR’.
It was determined this accounted for the less than 20 per cent of patients who survived to hospital discharge.
Experts say giving CPR can double the chances of survival of a cardiac arrest (stock image)
Doubles chance of survival
The British Heart Foundation says about 10,000 people die in the UK each year because bystanders do not know how to do CPR if they see someone having a cardiac arrest.
CPR involves giving regular chest compressions to make the heart pump blood around the body. It has been found to double the chance of survival.
Dr Chugh and colleagues showed although the overall risk of having a cardiac arrest during sex is low, death rates are high.
Only a small percentage of cases are related to sexual activity, but survival remains low.
The study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology said this was despite a partner being present.
Sex triggers heart attacks
It results in around 350,000 deaths annually in the US, and about 100,000 in the UK. It is known sex may trigger cardiac arrests.
So the researchers looked at the community-based Oregon Sudden Unexpected Death Study (Oregon SUDS) database from 2002 to 2015 to discover their frequency during or within an hour after sex among over 18s.
All reported cases were based on emergency medical service reports containing detailed information regarding their cause.
In total, the researchers identified 4,557 during the study period, of which 34 (0.7%) were linked to sexual activity.
On average these patients were more likely to be male, middle aged, African-American and have a history of cardiovascular disease, with a majority taking medication for it.
Overall, the researchers said they found a relatively low burden of cardiac arrest in relation to sex.
Most cases were men with a previous history of cardiovascular disease. The researchers also noted some cases after sex may also involve medications, stimulants and alcohol use.
The latest study is the largest of its kind.
Earlier this year a much smaller French survey of just under 250 men found they were four times more likely to die when having a cardiac arrest during sex.
Just one in eight survived, compared to 50 percent for those who fell victim when doing other physical activities, such as sport or exercise.
That team suspected the reason was men are far less likely to call for help when they are naked.
Less than half of them were given CPR, compared to 80 percent of other cardiac arrest victims. They also had longer delays in getting treatment.
Scientists say the key to surviving is calling the emergency services immediately and starting treatment.
For every minute that the heart attacks passes untreated the chances of survival reduce by ten per cent.
Source: British Heart Foundation
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-5076923/Low-survival-cardiac-arrests-men-having-sex.html#ixzz4yNnvpAHs
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