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Ventricular Fibrillation

Ventricular fibrillation or VF occurs when there are uncoordinated contractions within the
ventricles of the heart. The primary cause of VF is hypoxia (lack of oxygen) to the heart
muscle which causes hyperirritability in the cardiac muscle tissue.
As a result, multiple muscles cells within the ventricles simultaneously fire as
pacemakers causing a quivering or fibrillation that is ineffective for adequate cardiac
output.

The two images above show what ventricular fibrillation will look like on a EKG rhythm
strip.
VF can rapidly lead to heart muscle ischemia and there is a high likelihood that it will
deteriorate into asystole.
Ventricular fibrillation is treated using the left branch of the puslesless arrest arrest
algorithm. Click below to view the pulseless arrest algorithm diagram. When done click
again to close the diagram.
Pulseless Arrest Algorithm Diagram.

Ventricular fibrillation is always pulseless and must be confirmed by EKG or defibrillator


monitor. Defibrillation is the treatment of choice and should occur as soon as possible.