SCA News

SCA News

Ryan Shay and SCA: The Death of a Young Track Star

March 18, 2008–NEW YORK–Joe Shay received official word Tuesday what caused his son’s sudden death Nov. 3 at the U.S. Olympic marathon trails. But four months of testing on Ryan Shay’s heart tissue samples, by some of the nation’s leading cardiology forensic experts and geneticists, left unanswered the biggest question: Why?

According to a statement by the New York City’s medical examiner’s office, Ryan Shay, a distance star from Central Lake, died of "cardiac arrhythmia due to cardiac hypertrophy with patchy fibrosis of undetermined etiology."

Minimally Interrupted Cardiac Resuscitation Triples Rate of Survival

March 13, 2008–NEW YORK–A new approach to cardiac resuscitation designed to maintain nearly constant chest compressions triples the rate of survival of "out-of-hospital" cardiac arrest, study findings suggest.

"Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is a major public health problem and a leading cause of death," note the study investigators. "Although early defibrillation with automated external defibrillators improves survival, early defibrillation is rare and few patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survive."

Move Over Seattle…Here Comes Anchorage Alaskan City Achieves 40% Save Rate

February 25, 2008­­–ANCHORAGE–How does the Anchorage Fire Department (AFD) compare to other cities in the delivery of emergency medical services? If you had a cardiac arrest and collapsed in Anchorage what chance would you have to survive?

A 2003 USA Today article found disparities in emergency medical care across the nation and said cities that carefully track their EMS performance save many more lives. Several cities including Houston, Anchorage, Austin, Cincinnati, Kansas City, Raleigh and Tucson have signed up for the Emory University/CDC (Centers for Disease Control) study known as Cardiac Arrest Registry to Enhance Survival, or CARES.

Patients More Likely to Survive SCA on Weekdays

February 21, 2008–ScienceDaily–Patients who have an in-hospital cardiac arrest at night or on the weekend have a substantially lower rate of survival to discharge than hospitalized patients who experience a cardiac arrest during day/evening times on weekdays, according to a new study.

The detection and treatment of cardiac arrests may be less effective at night because of patient, hospital, staffing and response factors. If in-hospital cardiac arrests are more common or survival is worse on nights and weekends, this information could have important implications for hospital staffing, training, care delivery processes and equipment decisions, according to background information in the article.

AEDs Donated to Maine Schools

February 20, 2008–CARMEL, Maine––U.S. Senator Susan Collins and Maine Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Director Jay Bradshaw applauded a donation of 25 automated external defibrillators (AEDs) for Maine schools from Defibtech, a company that designs and manufactures the portable, electronic devices that can shock a heart back into normal rhythm and save a victim of sudden cardiac arrest.

Shanghai Medical Experts Urge AED Placement in Public Locations

February 20, 2008­–SHANGHAI­–Local medical experts are urging the government to install automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in public venues as soon as possible to provide people with emergency treatment if they suffer sudden cardiac arrest (SCA).Beijing is currently the only city in China to have installed defibrillators in public places, including airports and at Olympic sports venues.The local government is considering the issue in the lead-up to World Expo in 2010.

A training center was established at Shanghai Chest Hospital last month to teach the public how to use AEDs properly.

Austin SCA Survivors Celebrate with Rescuers

February 15, 2008–AUSTIN–On Valentine’s Day, 73 local men and women who survived sudden cardiac arrest got a chance to meet their rescuers at the Austin/Travis County Emergency Medical Service’s annual Take Heart Austin Survivor Celebration.

Doug Engle suffered a heart attack one year ago, while running along Austin's hike and bike trail.

“About that time, I started having pain in my chest and I just kind of sluffed it off,” said Engle.

After walking about a mile to his truck, Engle went into cardiac arrest.  His wife was nine months pregnant at the time.

“He wasn't breathing, he didn't have a heartbeat,” said Matt Paul, a paramedic with Austin/Travis County EMS.

Paul and fellow paramedic, Craig Fairbrother, work at an EMS station just down the road.  They were called out soon after.

View ICD Case Online February 28th

February 12, 2008–DAYTONA BEACH–HalifaxHealth will present Florida’s first live online automated Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) case on Thursday, February 28, at 6:30 pm on

"Close the Gap" Launched: Aims to Raise Awareness About SCA in Underserved Populations

February 4, 2008­–NATICK, Mass–Boston Scientific Corporation today announced the public debut of an educational initiative called “Close the Gap,” which is aimed at addressing disparities in cardiovascular care for the underserved patient populations of women, black Americans and Latino Americans. The Company said it is collaborating on the Close the Gap initiative with a number of organizations, including WomenHeart, Black Coaches and Administrators, the Athlete's Heartbeat and the National Coalition of Pastors' Spouses. Several National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) member schools are also supporting Close the Gap efforts. The campaign is being led by a steering committee of leading physicians from across the country and will have a strong focus on community education.

SCA Survivor Wins Award from Volvo for Work as AED Crusader

January 18, 2008–KALAMAZOO, MI­–Ronald Dundon had a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) in February 2003. The attending emergency team’s use of CPR and an automated external defibrillator (AED) saved him. After his recovery, Dundon founded the AED Fund of Kalamazoo County, Michigan to help increase the chances of survival for future SCA victims in underserved communities.

The AED Fund raises money to purchase AEDs for first responders, high schools, and middle schools in Kalamazoo county. The organization has also formed partnerships with Kalamazoo County Medical Control and the Emergency Medical Services system to ensure that hard-pressed fire departments receive this life-saving device. Additionally, the AED Fund educates the public about the need for CPR and AED training and where to get it. As a certified CPR instructor, Ronald teaches basic CPR classes free of charge.

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The mission of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Foundation is to prevent death and disability from sudden cardiac arrest. The vision of the SCA Foundation is to increase awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and influence attitudinal and behavioral changes that will reduce mortality and morbidity from SCA.

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