SCA News

SCA News

Home AED Used to Save Neighbor

January 23, 2007 – Immediate intervention saved the life of Reynold Nikaido, 50, after he collapsed suddenly at his home in Halimaile. His son, Ryan, 19, began CPR and sent for neighbor, Chris Gilbert, a paramedic who keeps an automated external defibrillator (AED) in his home. Gilbert used the AED to restore a normal heartbeat. Firefighters and paramedics arrived about 10 minutes later. Nikaido’s heart stopped several more times on the way to the Maui Memorial Medical Center. He was later transferred to Straub Clinic and Hospital in Honolulu, where he received an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD).

Gilbert, a longtime CPR-AED instructor and early defibrillation advocate, is accustomed to saving lives on the job. But it was the first time Gilbert had used his personal defibrillator to help save a life.

Mild Cooling Used to Prevent Brain Damage

January 23, 2007 – Andy Nelson, 58, of Longwood, Florida, recently suffered sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) while mowing his lawn. Paramedics tried to resuscitate him on the way to the hospital. Finally, his heart was shocked back to life, but he remained in a coma. To prevent brain damage, Nelson was treated with mild therapeutic hypothermia using high tech pads filled with cold water. Nelson’s body temperature was lowered for 24 hours, allowing his brain to recuperate slowly. According to a report in the Centre Daily Times (http://www.centredaily.com), Nelson and his wife are convinced that cooling made all the difference in his recovery and quality of life.

Legislator Wants AEDs in More Public Places

January 22, 2007 - Joseph Sanfilippo, D-Binghamton (NY), would like to improve access to early defibrillation in Broome County, NY. A state law that goes into effect in September will require places of public assembly with a capacity of 1,000 or more to have a defibrillator on site and to have someone trained to use it. Sanfilippo plans to introduce county-wide legislation that would also mandate defibrillator programs in smaller-sized venues. He was motivated by the death last fall of Binghamton High School lacrosse player John Mack, who died after being struck in the chest with a lacrosse stick.

SCA Strikes During Paramedic Class

January 22, 2007 – NEW YORK – Jeffrey Sanger, 39, was preparing for his paramedic training class at the Emergency Medical Service Training Center in Fort Totten, Queens last Friday, when he began to have chest pains and become pale and sweaty. Like many heart attack victims, he protested that he was okay. Then he collapsed in full cardiac arrest.

It turned into a perfect teaching moment. Paramedic instructors immediately gave Sanger cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and then used a defibrillator to shock his heart back to life. His breathing and heartbeat were restored within minutes and he was talking to his rescuers. He was later in stable condition at Long Island Jewish Medical Center.

Pittsburgh Sheriff Survives SCA

January 9, 2007– Acting Allegheny County Sheriff William P. Mullen, Jr. survived sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) while playing basketball, thanks to the quick actions of retired Pittsburgh police Sgt. Paul McComb and city Detective Paul Dugan, who provided cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and used an automated external defibrillator (AED) on Mullen. He was released from Mercy Hospital one week later.

Mullen commended his rescuers and the crew from City of Pittsburgh Medic and all the doctors, nurses and staff who contributed to his care.

"I don't know how my family and I would have made it through this difficult time without the support of the law enforcement community. I look forward to getting back to work soon," added Mullen, who will continue cardiac rehabilitation.

Legal Expert Advocates Revamping AED and 9-1-1 Laws - Model Legislation Proposed

January 4, 2007--Current AED laws impede the deployment of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) and do not protect all AED program participants from liability, according to Richard A. Lazar, Esq., a leading expert in AED program design and operations, risk management, law and public policy. According to Lazar, who serves as a member of the SCA Foundation Board of Directors, many state AED laws discourage bystander action and increase liability risks--despite the intentions of their authors. The SCA Foundation has endorsed Lazar's views.

Boy Struck in Chest at Ball Game Fights for Life

June 9, 2006 - WAYNE, NJ - Twelve-year old Steven Domalewski was pitching in a Police Athletic League game in Wayne, NJ, on June 6th when he was struck in the chest by the ball, leading to commotio cordis, a cause of sudden cardiac arrest in children. Several onlookers provided cardiopulmonary resuscitation. While there was a defibrillator at the ballpark, it was not used since professional help arrived quickly, according to PAL officials.

Only 15% of the victims have been resuscitated, according to the U.S. Commotio Cordis Registry.

For information on commotio cordis, see www.la12.org and www.suddendeathathletes.org.

Rural AED Act Resuscitated but in Poor Condition

June 7, 2006 - HUMESTON, IA - The Labor, HHS, Education Appropriations subcommittee has earmarked $1.5 million for Rural and Community Access to Emergency Devices Grant Program, "rejecting efforts of the Administration to terminate the initiative." The program provides funding to rural communities to purchase automated external defibrillators (AEDs) and provide training in their use. The appropriation level is substantially lower than amounts allocated in the past and a disappointment to emergency cardiovascular care advocates. The funding level in FY 2005 was $8.927 million.

OSHA Issues Best Practices Guide for Workplace Safety that Addresses AED Programs

June 9, 2006 - WASHINGTON, DC - The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued Best Practices Guide: Fundamentals of a Workplace First-Aid Program (OSHA 3317-05N 2006), a new guide to help employers and employees develop workplace first aid programs.

“A workplace first-aid program is a key component of any comprehensive safety and health management system,” said OSHA Administrator Ed Foulke. “Our new guide offers practical information on how to help employers plan and implement first-aid programs as well as effective training.”

OSHA recommends the provision of automated external defibrillator (AED) training if an AED is available at the work site. The Guide is advisory in nature. It is not a standard or regulation and it creates no new legal obligations.

Test Detects Need for ICD

June 5, 2006 - A test that picks up a nearly undetectable variation in the heartbeat helps single out heart attack survivors who are likely to develop potentially deadly heart rhythms, reports the June issue of the Harvard Heart Letter. These are the people who would most benefit from getting a device called an implantable cardioverter defibrillator, or ICD, which shocks the heart back into a normal rhythm if it goes astray.

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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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