After suffering from heart trouble during a morning run, one Lanham man was saved—and restored
This past June, Sandra Roberts and Beatrice Yeawon, patient care technicians at Washington Adventist Hospital, began their morning with a routine walk around Lake Artemesia in College Park. On that particular day, however, their presence had a much greater impact than they could have ever imagined.
They turned a corner to find a jogger collapsed on the ground. Another bystander was already calling 9-1-1.
“I immediately ran over to check on the man,” Roberts says. “After finding he had no pulse, I started doing CPR.” Roberts and Yeawon took turns administering chest compressions until an ambulance arrived to take the man to the Emergency Department (ED) at Washington Adventist Hospital.
The jogger was Jerry Farmer, a 56-year-old from Lanham who was suffering from sudden cardiac arrest, which generally occurs as a result of an electrical disturbance in the heart and prevents blood flow to the rest of the body. If not treated immediately, this condition can lead to sudden cardiac death.
The next several days were critical for Farmer. Expert care and coordination between the ED and the intensive care unit helped to stabilize Farmer, and he fully regained consciousness. Farmer then underwent a cardiac catheterization procedure in an effort to identify the cause of his arrest.
“After locating three critical blockages in his heart arteries, we performed an angioplasty and placed three stents,” says Anees Ahsan, MD, interventional cardiologist at Washington Adventist Hospital. “This minimally invasive procedure uses a small balloon guided across a narrowing in the artery and inflates to unblock the artery, which very significantly reduces the possibility of the blockage returning.”
To correct Farmer’s irregular heartbeat and prevent future episodes of cardiac arrest, Pirooz Mofrad, MD, electrophysiologist and medical director of electrophysiology at Washington Adventist Hospital, then inserted an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) within Farmer’s heart.
“The ICD is an electronic device used to monitor heart rhythm and delivers energy to the heart muscle to help it beat in a normal sequence,” Dr. Mofrad explains. “This device gives people with damaged hearts a second chance at a normal life.”
A Grateful Patient
Now safely back to work, Farmer credits Roberts, Yeawon and the entire medical team at Washington Adventist Hospital for saving him. “The care was exceptional,” he says.
“I can’t thank Beatrice and Sandra enough for saving my life,” Farmer adds. “Without their medical expertise, the outcome would have been very different.”
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