Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) kills a person every 2 minutes in the US....almost 300,000 people a year. Why so many? Lots of reasons exist, but I believe it can be boiled down to 2 things, awareness of your condition and time. Fortunately, there is something that can be done about both issues.
Awareness comes from knowing your body, what it's telling you and doing something about it. Women are better at this than men....statistically another strike against the construction worker....most are men. While it's easy to diagnose the acute issues, the more subtle symptoms, and equally serious, are commonly passed aside as generic body aches from a day on the construction site. This is where the physiological effects of being a man, working construction, work against you. Ignoring those different aches and pains, like many working age men do or chocking them up to a day on the job, where construction work can produce them often, can have serious consequences in a few hours. Before something happens, know the signs, and don't ignore them. Tell a buddy and get help fast.
OK, let's say you are like most and have ignored the signs and something does happen. SCA strikes, quickly, quietly and unannounced. Some of your co-workers on the job may have been trained in CPR, or maybe they just know hands-only CPR and they get to work on you. But that can only do so much until help arrives, which is statistically more than 10 minutes away. It's absolutely critical to restart your heart within 3-4 minutes if you are to have any chance of surviving SCA and there's only one way to do it, an AED. Fortunately, your buddies know there is an AED on the job-site can save your life. Whether trained in AEDs or not, they turn it on, follow the easy prompts, apply the pads and listen for instructions. If a shock is needed, the machine will say so and the button is pressed to save your life.
Your a man and you work construction, those are 2 strikes against you. Don't let the third strike happen. Know the signs and do something about it and make sure there is an AED at your job site, for your friends who will ignore the signs.