Cardiac arrest - Definition

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Cardiac arrest, also called cardiopulmonary arrest or circulatory arrest, is characterized by the cessation of respiratory functions and blood circulation. Clinical signs of cardiac arrest are a deep loss of consciousness, a lack of pulse, a dilation of the pupils, a lack of breathing and eventual cutaneous cyanosis. Victims of cariac arrest appear dead. Respiratory and circulatory functions must be immediately re-established through cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR.