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Ventricular fibrillation (V-fib) is an abnormal heartbeat where the heart beats too quickly, with erratic electrical impulses. During ventricular fibrillation, the ventricles quiver instead of pumping blood to the lungs and the rest of the body. V-fib is the most common cause of sudden cardiac death and necessitates immediate medical attention.

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1. How Does the Heart Normally Function?

The heart is made up of four chambers. The atria make up the two upper chambers while the ventricles comprise the two lower chambers. The sinus node, located in the right atrium, controls the heart's rhythm, starting each heartbeat by producing electrical impulses that travel from the sinus node across the atria. This makes the atrial muscles contract and pump blood into the ventricles. The electrical impulse arrives at the atrioventricular (AV) node, which slows down the electrical impulse before sending it on to the ventricles. This delay gives the ventricles time to fill with blood. When the electrical impulse reaches the ventricle muscles, they contract, pumping blood to the rest of the body.

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