Our weekly update on news in the world of heart safety and noninvasive cardiology
SCA survivors make the case for AEDs
When 17-year-old Curtis Rosenau (pictured) went into cardiac arrest on the basketball court two years ago, he was fortunate. There was an automated external defibrillator (AED) available, and rescuers used it to re-start his heartbeat. The Edmonton teenager, who has Long QT Syndrome (a condition affecting heart rhythm) was on hand last week to see the Boston Pizza Foundation present $1 million to the Heart and Stroke Foundation for the purchase of AEDs.
“I think the most important thing I can learn from that night is how important CPR education is and how important AEDs are in public places,” Rosenau said.
Former Detroit Red Wings hockey player Jiri Fischer is also a spokesperson for the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s AED campaign. Fischer collapsed of sudden cardiac arrest on the bench during a game in 2005; the team’s medical staff used an AED to revive him.
In Santa Clara, California, the youth commission held the “Jolt” benefit fashion show to raise money for the school district’s purchase of AEDs. Two sudden cardiac arrest incidents last fall— one in which a sports referee collapsed at a game and another in which a 12-year-old collapsed during a community event — vividly illustrated the value of AEDs, which were used in both rescues.
Oregon high school principal uses AED to save man
Schools hesitating to equip their campuses with an external defibrillator for fear of liability concerns, take note.
An Oregon driver whose passenger who’d collapse from sudden cardiac arrest pulled into a local high school, looking for help. It was a good decision: St. Helen’s High School is equipped with anAED and Nanette Hagen, the principal, was prepared to use one. She led school staff in the rescue, which restored the man’s heartbeat before firefighters arrived.
The SCA victim was taken to the hospital and is recovering, Hagen told a reporter for Kgw.com. She said that as a result of the experience she plans to train more of the school staff in use of the AED.
Florida couple donates $300,000 to equip patrol cards with AEDs
Fritz and Kathy Friday of Naples, Florida, donated $300,000 to the American Heart Association, requesting that the money go to Collier County Sheriff’s Office defibrillator program. The money will make is possible for the department to place AEDs in all patrol cars, and to buy batteries and pads for the devices. Kathy Friday is a sudden cardiac arrest survivor. She collapsed while working out at a local country club three years ago, and was revived by a personal trainer using an available AED.
Parent of SCA victim backs law to mandate AEDs at swimming pools
Mary Becker’s son, James, suffered permanent neurological damage after he nearly drowned in a pool in Pikesville, Maryland, two years ago. Becker is now supporting State Senator Katherine Klausmeier, D-Baltimore County, who has proposed legislation that would require AEDs at all public pools in the state.
“Had a defibrillator been at the pool, James would not have suffered,” Becker toldhometownannapolis.com. “His body and mind would not be locked inside.”
Becker and other pool safety advocates spoke at a public meeting last week just before the opening of many area pools. Cheryl Anne DeHart of Cardiac Science and Rachel Moyer, founder of Parent Heart Watch, attended the meeting and provided a demonstration of defibrillator use.