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Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU)

What is the cardiac intensive care unit (CICU)?

The cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) is a special hospital ward that focuses on the care of patients with severe cardiovascular disease. As such, the wards are staffed with medical personnel trained in cardiac care and have the equipment needed to treat heart conditions.

The most common reason for admittance into the CICU is a heart attack or other form of acute coronary syndrome. These patients are at a higher risk of rapid, unexpected changes in their condition, requiring continuous therapy. Because of this, those who have had a heart attack are often admitted to the CICU as they recover.

Other procedures and conditions that may require someone to be admitted into the CICU include:

  • heart failure
  • coronary bypass surgery
  • awaiting a heart transplant
  • acute coronary syndromes
  • unstable angina
  • life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia

How does the cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) improve healthcare?

Patients are admitted to the cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) when they have acute, severe, or unstable cardiac conditions that require monitoring at all times, along with specialized cardiovascular therapy. The staff ratio in the CICU is much higher than in other hospital units, allowing the staff to monitor the patients more closely.

Those who require the CICU also typically need specialized testing, which the CICU is equipped to perform. This allows for more inclusive healthcare services that keep the patient from being transferred.