Apr 3
karesun
karesun , Posted on SUPPORT NETWORK Blog

Sudden Cardiac Arrest

On July 19, 2016 I survived a sudden cardiac arrest.  I had an appointment with my electrophysiologist, and stopped for an errand nearby his office, 75 miles from my house.  I woke up several days later in the ICU.  I have no memory of about an hour before the event.  I had checked in at the window and chatted with the receptionist, and sat down in the waiting room.  Immediately after sitting down, a waiting patient went up to the window and alerted the staff there was something wrong with me.  Staff came out and I was seizing, pulseless, blue, and not breathing.  The electrophysiologist immediately began CPR.  I was in full arrest with no heart activity.  I had a pacemaker to correct a slow heartbeat for just over a year.  The interrogation revealed I had gone from vtach to vfib to flatline very quickly.  The AED would not shock my heart with no electrical activity.  Rescue arrived, the dr. continued CPR, and after 10 minutes I went into ventricular fibrillation.  4-5 shocks and continued CPR for another 10 minutes, and I had a heartbeat.  After many tears and emotions from the doctor's office, thinking they would never see me again (I've been going to my EP for 16 years), the office got a call from the ER saying I was speaking.  I was discharged after a week with a Zoll life vest.  In late September I received an ICD.  It has been deemed a hereditary electrical issue (my mom's brother died suddenly of an arrhythmia).  I have no other heart disease--just electrical. Thanks to immediate CPR, I have no organ damage.  This event has changed me in ways I can't explain.  The event was peaceful.  I am grateful for every day.  I still have a difficult time accepting that this really happened, as I have no real memory of being in the hospital.  5 broken ribs were the most painful part of recovery.  My dr. reminds me I now have 2 birthdays. I stay in touch with fire rescue that responded to my arrest, and actually knew the rescue lieutenant.  There was no recognition on scene as I was 75 miles from my home!  I went to their award ceremony at the city commission meeting.  Friends have been invaluable during my recovery.  I stay busy with work and volunteering in my community.  There is a purpose for me to still be here.  
5 Comments
  • purple heart
    purple heart,
    Welcome to the cardiac survivor club!!! How strange , I suffered my cardiac arrest on July 19, 2000!!! 6 years earlier! It has been a very hard road but I am thankful every day that I survived! I am so happy you survived!!! Never give up hope!!! Like my brother who saved my life says " stay positive"! I enjoy the little things in life now!!! I am so happy to meet another survivor !!? Take care! Best of luck to you!!!
  • AHAASAKatie
    AHAASAKatie,
    Thank you so much for sharing this! Best Katie
  • kimk
    kimk,
    Glad to hear you were at a great place when it happened. (Sorry it had to happen at all, though.) I also went into sudden cardiac arrest in Oct. 2015 and had an ICD implanted and have had no episodes or anything in the 1 1/2 years since. Best of luck to you and glad your situation turned out so well. I wake up every day happy and thankful for this technology and especially my family who was at home when it happened and performed CPR until ambulance arrived. Happy re-birth! :-)
  • Kathleen T
    Kathleen T,
    What an inspiring story. So many with cardiac arrest do not survive. It sounds like you were meant to be here. Enjoy your second chance at life!
  • Marioernesto
    Marioernesto,

    hi i just had sudden cardiac arrest last Friday June 29, 2018. My daughter did CPR right away after i was collapsed inside our apartment. Fire fighters and Paramedics tcame then ook over. i was revived thanks to my daughter and fire fighters and Paramedics. i am admitted in the hospital then  in Coronary Care Unit. Last Saturday between 2-3am i had another cardiac arrest. Now my vitals are stable but still not out of the woods yet. My team of doctors are still figuring out what causes my cardiac arrest.

    I am diagnosed  type 2 DM, heart failure (bypass 2010), Kidney failure (Dialysis started last year), Colon Cancer then Liver cancer after. Now they are figuring out what course of action to do. They will talk to my Oncologist to know my prognosis whether poor or good. then if its good they might do cardiac catherization which is invasive procedure. but the problem is my Oncologist is on vacation right now she will be back July 11. My two daughters mentioned about EPS. so my question now is between the two procedures EPS and Cardiac Catherization, which is more i need. and which is more less invasive procedure. July 11 is too long for me to wait. i am so confused and i need some advice from this group. thank you so much. 

    i am so thankful i survived the two SCA episode. 

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