Putin’s alleged ‘cardiac arrest’: here’s everything we know so far about the claims

As Putin’s health once again makes headlines, let’s fact check the claim that he suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday.

Vladimir Putin alleged cardiac arrest fact check
© Contributor / GETTYIMAGES
Vladimir Putin alleged cardiac arrest fact check

Rumours have been circulating over the past few days about Vladimir Putin’s health. A report posted on social media by Russian Telegram channel General SVR claimed that the Russian President suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday evening and, having been found in his room by security officers, was resuscitated.

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The story has since been picked up by various British publications including the Express, GB News and the Mirror. However, can we really trust this report? Here’s what is known about Putin's alleged health scare.

Putin’s alleged cardiac arrest

General SVR claimed that Putin was in his room on Sunday 22 October when security guards heard noises from inside and what might have been the sound of the Russian president’s body hitting the floor. Putin was reportedly found lying on his bedroom floor, next to food and drink that he had knocked from a table as he collapsed. The channel claims this happened around 9:05pm Moscow time on Sunday, and ‘doctors, who were on duty at the residence in one of the adjacent rooms, were immediately called’:

Putin convulsively arched while lying on the floor, rolling his eyes.

However, the channel stated that the president was treated immediately and successfully:

Doctors performed resuscitation, having previously determined that the president was in cardiac arrest.
Help was provided on time, the heart was started, and Putin regained consciousness.

Can we trust this claim?

General SVR is reportedly run by a former Russian lieutenant-general and claims to gather insider information from former and current Russian officials. However, it is known for spreading unverified information about Vladimir Putin. Although this report comes as other claims regarding Putin’s health circulate, including the rumour that he used a body double on his recent trip to China, it is yet to be confirmed.

There are even reports claiming that this accident has seriously spooked Putin’s inner circle, which seems logical, but is yet to be backed by any solid evidence or independent verification. BNN Fact Check states that:

[General SVR] has been posting messages about Putin’s health since 2020, claiming that he is suffering from a terminal illness and that he has been replaced by body doubles who undergo plastic surgery and use special effects to mimic his appearance.

Furthermore, BNN explains that the images that circulated along with these claims were generated by an ‘artificial intelligence (AI) tool called This Person Does Not Exist, which creates realistic but fake faces of people who do not exist. The images were manipulated to resemble Putin and add details such as his clothes and surroundings.’

According to Reuters, the Kremlin has rejected these claims and stated that the Russia president is in fine health. Therefore, with a lack of evidence, this report must be considered as a claim and not as fact.

Read more:

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Sources used:

Express: Vladimir Putin 'suffers cardiac arrest' sparking 'alarm' in Kremlin inner circle

GB News: Vladimir Putin 'found on floor' after suffering 'cardiac arrest' - claim

Mirror: Vladimir Putin 'resuscitated' after having 'cardiac arrest' claims Telegram channel

BNN: BNN FACT CHECK: Did Vladimir Putin suffer a cardiac arrest on October 22?

Putin’s life could be ‘much shorter’ after alleged cardiac arrest and his death may spark a ‘coup’, experts warn Putin’s life could be ‘much shorter’ after alleged cardiac arrest and his death may spark a ‘coup’, experts warn