Emergency signs

Signs of a heart attack

If you experience any of these signs, call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number immediately.

Women’s signs of heart attack

The most common heart attack sign is chest pain or discomfort; however, women can experience a heart attack without chest pressure. They may experience shortness of breath, pressure or pain in the lower chest or upper abdomen, dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting, upper back pressure or extreme fatigue.

Signs of cardiac arrest

If the heart stops beating, blood stops flowing to the brain, heart and vital organs. Brain injury can begin within five minutes.

  1. Sudden collapse

  2. Loss of consciousness

  3. Unresponsiveness to touch or sound

  4. Not breathing normally or making gasping sounds

Who should learn CPR and how to use an AED?

Everyone should learn. Cardiac arrest is a critical medical emergency where every second counts.


Signs of SADs

SADS (Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndromes) covers a variety of cardiac disorders which are often genetic and can cause sudden death in young, apparently healthy people.

  1. Fainting or seizure during physical activity

  2. Fainting or seizure from distress or being startled.

  3. Family history of death that is sudden, unexplained.

Worried that you’re at risk?

Learn your risks and how to lower them