- Singer Lisa Marie Presley has died after suffering from a possible cardiac arrest.
- Presley was reportedly found unresponsive Thursday at her home in California.
- Presley’s mother had said earlier she was receiving the “best care” after being taken to the hospital.
Lisa Marie Presley has died after suffering from a possible cardiac arrest on Thursday.
The singer-songwriter, age 54, collapsed at her home in Calabasas, California, and was not breathing when paramedics arrived, according to the Associated Press.
The medical team administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The team reportedly said Presley, the daughter of Elvis Presley, regained a pulse and showed “signs of life.”
It’s unclear what caused Presley to go into cardiac arrest.
“It is with a heavy heart that I must share the devastating news that my beautiful daughter Lisa Marie has left us,” Presley’s mother, Priscilla Presley, confirmed in a statement to PEOPLE on Thursday night.
“She was the most passionate strong and loving woman I have ever known. We ask for privacy as we try to deal with this profound loss. Thank you for the love and prayers. At this time there will be no further comment.”
What is cardiac arrest?
Cardiac arrest is the sudden loss of heart function, breathing, and consciousness.
During cardiac arrest, the heart’s electrical system stops functioning.
There are various causes of cardiac arrest, including arrhythmia, or irregular heart rhythms, along with cardiomyopathies (heart muscle diseases), valve issues, and coronary artery disease, says Dr. Rigved Tadwalkar, MD, a board-certified cardiologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California.
“The most common cause is electrical malfunction of the heart due to a rapid and irregular heartbeat from the bottom chambers of the heart (the ventricles),” Tadwalkar told Healthline.
When this happens, the heart is unable to pump blood effectively to vital organs like the brain, lungs, and kidneys, Tadwalkar noted.
If heart function is not restored immediately, cardiac arrest can be deadly.
Here’s why CPR is so crucial for brain health
CPR is a life-saving procedure that is given to people whose heart suddenly stops beating.
“These compressions help keep blood flowing to the body since the heart is unable to do this on its own,” Tadwalkar said.
The brain relies on a constant supply of oxygen and loss of blood flow can immediately interrupt brain activity and lead to loss of consciousness.
Cardiac arrest can deprive the brain of oxygen and severely injure the brain.
“Organ dysfunction can be permanent in these situations, particularly if resuscitation is not initially provided in a timely manner,” says Tadwalkar.
In fact, when it comes to organ damage, doctors are most concerned about the brain.
“We worry most about anoxic brain injury, which is irreversible brain injury due to lack of oxygen for a prolonged period of time,” Tadwalkar said.
CPR can not only save a person’s life, but by keeping blood flowing to the brain, their brain function as well.
How to give CPR
To deliver CPR, you want to give 100-120 chest compressions per minute.
Chest compressions are given with two hands placed on the center of the chest.
The compressions should have a depth of two inches, according to Tadwalkar.
When given immediately — ideally, within a few minutes — CPR can drastically improve a person’s chances of survival after experiencing cardiac arrest.
In addition to CPR, a defibrillator can deliver shocks to the heart, which will help restore a normal heart rhythm within a matter of minutes.
“While the exact survival statistics can vary depending on the situation, CPR can double or triple an individual’s chance of survival,” Tadwalkar said.
The bottom line:
Lisa Marie Presley died Thursday after suffering from a possible cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrest, which is the sudden loss of heart function, breathing, and consciousness, can be deadly if cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is not immediately administered. By keeping blood flowing to vital organs like the brain, CPR can save a person’s life, and with it, their brain function.