Sudden cardiac death: Epidemiology, pathogenesis and management

Akshay Kumar, Dor Mordehay Avishay, Calvin Richard Jones, Juber Dastagir Shaikh, Roopvir Kaur, Michael Aljadah, Asim Kichloo, Nimisha Shiwalkar, Suresh Keshavamurthy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Sudden cardiac death (SCD) is an unexpected sudden death due to a heart condition, that occurs within one hour of symptoms onset. SCD is a leading cause of death in western countries, and is responsible for the majority of deaths from cardiovascular disease. Moreover, SCD accounts for mortality in approximately half of all coronary heart disease patients. Nevertheless, the recent advancements made in screening, prevention, treatment, and management of the underlying causes has decreased this number. In this article, we sought to review established and new modes of screening patients at risk for SCD, treatment and prevention of SCD, and the role of new technologies in the field. Further, we delineate the current epidemiologic trends and pathogenesis. In particular, we describe the advancement in molecular autopsy and genetic testing, the role of target temperature management, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and transvenous and subcutaneous implantable cardioverter devices (ICDs).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-158
Number of pages12
JournalReviews in Cardiovascular Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. Published by IMR Press.


  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation
  • Sudden cardiac arrest
  • Sudden cardiac death
  • Transvenous and subcutaneous implantable cardioverter devices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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