Sudden cardiac arrest is a medical condition caused by sudden stopping of the heart. Sometimes, it comes on without warning. In that case, knowing how to treat sudden cardiac arrest -- by doing CPR -- is the most important skill you can have.
But sudden cardiac arrest doesn't have to be a surprise. There are often hints that sudden cardiac arrest might be about to happen. Sudden cardiac arrest is much more common in heart attack victims than everyone else. Recognizing the signs and symptoms of a heart attack is the most definitive way to avoid death by sudden cardiac arrest.
If you're looking at someone right now that you think might be suffering sudden cardiac arrest, call 911 and let the emergency dispatcher talk you through it. On the other hand, if you want to know how to recognize sudden cardiac arrest, these are the signs and symptoms.