When a person is in shock, the body’s tissues and organs do not receive enough blood and begin to suffer from oxygen deprivation. Shock is a serious medical emergency that can lead to permanent tissue damage and even death.
A variety of conditions can cause shock, such as injury or trauma, heart failure, bleeding, dehydration, burns, fluid loss, diarrhea, septic shock, toxic shock, or anaphylaxis.
Shock progresses through three stages as the body attempts to increase blood volume.
In the first stage of shock, the heart beats quickly, blood vessels constrict and kidneys retain water to increase blood volume.
In the second stage, tissues and organs begin to suffer from lack of oxygen. The low levels of oxygen reaching the brain cause dizziness, confusion, and chest pain, due to lack of oxygenated blood.
In the third stage of shock, tissues and organs suffer permanent damage from oxygen deprivation. The organs fail, heart and kidneys shut down.