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Cardiac patients 'should go to heart centre'

30 March 2017 08:23

Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch

Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch

People who are taken to a specialist heart centre after suffering cardiac arrest are more likely to live than those taken to a general hospital.

That's according to a new study carried out in Denmark and published in the European Heart Journal.

Footballer Fabrice Muamba

In cardiac arrest a patient's heart stops pumping blood around the body. Footballer Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest while playing for Bolton Wanderers against Tottenham Hotspur in an FA Cup match in 2012.

The player was taken to the London Chest Hospital in Bethnal Green some six miles away. This was despite there being a general hospital under a mile away.

Some experts have pointed to the decision to take Muamba to a specialist centre when explaining his miraculous recovery.

Anyone who has suffered heart problems in the past can arrange specialist medical travel insurance when travelling overseas.

The new study found

Researchers in Denmark say of people who have a cardiac arrest while not already in a hospital, survival rates are higher among those taken to specialist heart centres rather than the nearest general hospital.

Some 41,186 patients who had suffered an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in Denmark between 2001 and 2013 were analysed for the study.

Of these, 7,373 patients were admitted directly to an invasive heart centre, while 17,991 were taken to a local hospital.

Those who were admitted directly to an invasive heart unit were found to be 11% more likely to still be alive 30 days after the event.

Lead researcher Dr Tinne Tranberg, a cardiologist at Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark, said: "Our results show that among cardiac arrest patients admitted to hospital, those admitted directly to an invasive heart centre have a higher chance of surviving, regardless of the distance."