Online ACLS Course

Chapter 8 : Ventricular Fibrillation and Pulseless VT

Ventricular fibrillation (VF) is an arrhythmia, which can cause sudden cardiac arrest. During ventricular fibrillation there is no organization of electrical activity in the heart. There is irregular and disarray of cardiac muscle. During VF, blood is not pumped through the systemic or pulmonary circulation. VF can change into asystole and sudden cardiac death in a matter of minutes.

​ Ventricular tachycardia (V-tach or VT) is a fast heart rhythm from the ventricles of the heart. VT can lead to VF and cause sudden death of the patient. A pulseless VT has no cardiac output causing no pulse and results in cardiac arrest. Ventricular fibrillation (VF) is an arrhythmia, which can cause sudden cardiac arrest. During ventricular fibrillation there is irregular organization of electrical activity in the heart. VF has many causes:

  • Heart attack
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Cardiomyopathies
  • Ischemia
  • Heart surgery
  • Drug toxicity
  • Smoking
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Accidental electrical shock

Symptoms of VF include:

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
Video Demonstration

Ventricular Fibrillation and Pulseless VT (Part 1)

Ventricular Fibrillation and Pulseless VT (Part 2)

VF does not have an identifiable ECG waveform. Earlier waveforms show a “coarse VF,” but after few minutes the waveforms are much smaller and show a “fine VF.”

course w-fib
heartbeat

Pulseless Ventricular Tachycardia
Ventricular tachycardia (V-tach or VT) is a fast heart rhythm from the ventricles of the heart. VT can lead to VF and cause sudde