Sudden Cardiac Arrest Warning Signs

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Story Updated: Nov 21, 2013

Sudden cardiac arrest sounds like it sneaks up and attacks. It happens when the heart stops due to a failure in its electrical system...and often requires being shocked to get it started again.

But now, a new study suggests men usually get a few warning signs weeks before.

Researchers looked at records from 5-hundred-67 middle-aged men who had cardiac arrest.

56 percent reported prior chest pain.

13 percent had shortness of breath in the weeks before the actual event.

While 4 percent had dizziness, fainting or palpitations.

Nearly 80 percent of the symptoms occurred between four weeks and one hour before the sudden cardiac arrest.

Less than 10- percent of people who suffer a cardiac arrest outside the hospital survive...so it's important to tune into any early warning signs.

Researchers are now conducting similar work in women to see if the warning signs are there, too.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with news from today that can lead to healthy tomorrows.

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Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to 1.8 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools in our Step Up program. To learn more, visit www.excellusbcbs.com