Sudden Cardiac Arrest – Risk Factors

Sudden Cardiac Arrest – Risk Factors

There are many health problems that occur suddenly, with no prior warning and no significant causes. Sudden cardiac arrest is one of those instances, but there are a few risk factors that you can watch to reduce your risk of this happening to you. Sudden cardiac arrest, also knows as SCA is when the heart suddenly stops beating, meaning blood stops flowing to all of the vital organs in the body. The symptoms are sudden and noticeable, so keep yourself educated so you know what to look out for.


Sudden cardiac arrest, as the name infers, is very sudden and can happen abruptly, with no prior warning signs. The main symptoms are a sudden collapse, no heartbeat or pulse, no breathing and a loss of consciousness. In most cases, these symptoms will occur with no prior symptoms. However in some cases, dizziness, fatigue, blackouts, chest pain, weakness, palpitations, vomiting or shortness of breath can also occur before a sudden cardiac arrest. If you or someone around you is experiencing these symptoms, it’s imperative to keep an eye on them in case it should pass into cardiac arrest.

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Risk Factors

Sudden cardiac arrest is more apparent in males, older people and people with pre-existing heart conditions. One of the highest risk factors for sudden cardiac arrest is a high intake of drugs or alcohol, along with the other medical conditions these can cause that may also mean you are at a higher risk for a sudden cardiac arrest. If there is family history of sudden cardiac arrest, heart attacks or heart failure, this can also increase the risk of it happening to you so ensuring you’re aware of your family history and keeping on top of your health is key to avoiding this happening to you. Pre-existing conditions such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol levels or a history of stroke can also make a sudden cardiac arrest a lot more likely, so keeping these conditions under control as much as possible through medication is imperative to prevent this occurring. Unfortunately, once you have had a sudden cardiac arrest and have survived, the risk of it happening again increases greatly and there is little you can do to alter this, but monitoring your overall health and reducing risks for other health conditions can certainly help in preventing another one occurring.

If you lead a healthy lifestyle, have none of the above pre-existing medical conditions, eat heart-healthy foods, exercise often and don’t smoke or consume a lot of alcohol, you’re already reducing the risk of having a sudden cardiac arrest, so if you’re in a risk category, these are all lifestyle choices to consider to reduce the risks.

Now that you are educated on how to spot a sudden cardiac arrest and what risk factors are involved, you can make informed decisions about your lifestyle to reduce the risk of it happening to you. As stated, if you lead a healthy lifestyle, make positive and healthy choices and manage any pre-existing medical conditions, you can greatly reduce the risk of this happening to you in the future.

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