Cardiac arrest Cardiac arrest is a sudden loss of blood flow resulting from the failure of the heart to effectively pump. Symptoms include loss of consciousness and abnormal or absent breathing. Some individuals may experience chest pain, shortness of breath, or nausea before cardiac arrest. If not treated within minutes, it usually leads to death Prevention includes not smoking, Meditation, physical activity, and maintaining a healthy weight. The most common cause of cardiac arrest is coronary artery disease. Less common causes include major blood loss, lack of oxygen, very low potassium, heart failure, and intense physical exercise. Treatment for cardiac arrest includes immediate cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and, if a shocakble rhythm is present, defibrillation.