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The beat goes on …

Save a life by learning the A-B-Cs and CPR

By Kylie Cordell For Clay Today
Posted 1/26/23

CLAY COUNTY – Jim Market was given a second shot at life when he collapsed from a left arterial descending heart attack – commonly known as the widowmaker – two years ago in the Baptist Oakleaf …

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The beat goes on …

Save a life by learning the A-B-Cs and CPR


CLAY COUNTY – Jim Market was given a second shot at life when he collapsed from a left arterial descending heart attack – commonly known as the widowmaker – two years ago in the Baptist Oakleaf ER parking lot.

The man from Middleburg wasn't breathing when his wife pulled their pickup truck to the front door.

"He stopped talking to me. He was making strange sounds and turning blue. All of a sudden, he wasn't responding to me," his wife, Timmi, said. "By the time I got to Oakleaf Parkway, he expelled his last breath. By then, I was driving 90 mph. I was punching him, yelling at him not to leave me."

When they arrived at the front door of the Emergency Room, she ran inside to get help. A security guard working the midnight shift saw Market slumped over and motionless. The guard pulled him from the seat and started doing Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Market on the sidewalk.

"I knew I had to get him out," Luis Vargas said.

Nurses and doctors quickly joined Vargas to help lift Market on a stretcher. A nurse continued chest compressions while Market was rushed into an exam room.

The medical team worked to stabilize Market.

“Jim was essentially dead,” said Dr. Joseph King. “We had to shock his heart several times to restore a normal rhythm.”

The quick response from the security guards' initial chest compressions and the entire team helped revived the patient from a heart attack that few survived.

Never has the success of CPR been on display more than when a national television audience watched in disbelief when Buffalo Bills safety went into cardiac arrest after getting a sudden hit to the chest that caused commotio cordis. Medical teams resuscitated him on the field and they were forced to perform CPR on him again at the hospital. Hamlin has since recovered and was released from the hospital.

But not everyone is so lucky. While many have heard of CPR, few people know how to administer it.

Here are the basics:

"Usually, the first thing you're going to do when administering CPR is (to) tap and shout," said Yolanda Tucker, an Acuity CPR and Safety Training Instructor in Orange Park. "You are waiting for a response, two seconds at the most, and then you want to check for a pulse."

You can check a pulse by placing your index and middle fingers on the neck to the side of the windpipe.

Tucker suggests checking their nail bed if they don't know how to check a pulse.

"It normally turns white and then pink again, this tells you that blood is flowing," she said.

If you cannot feel a pulse, alert bystanders to call 911 immediately and bring an AED, or Automatic External Difiblererator. Most companies are required to have one by law.

"Then you administer CPR until one of three things happens: that person receives RSC (Return to Spontaneous Circulation), EMS arrives or you are completely exhausted and cannot go any longer," she said.

If a child sustains cardiac arrest, use two thumbs or the heel of your hands to administer CRP and rescue breaths after each set of compressions. If you see a teen or adult collapse, you can perform hands-only CPR. Compressions should be hard and fast in the center of their chest.

To stay on track and help people find the right speed, Tucker suggested doing chest compressions to the tempo of the Bee Gee's song, “Stayin' Alive.”

"You want to do 30 compressions,” Tucker said.

There's no specific way to place your hands, but you want to ensure you are going down at least two inches on an adult," she said.

If you are in a situation where you have to use an AED, there are pictures on both pads. A child or infant pad goes front and center, both on the front and back. That's the only time you do not follow the pictures. Otherwise, put one AED pad on the right side of the chest (just below the collarbone) and the other on the lower left side of the chest.

Turn on the AED and then follow the prompts. A voice will tell you exactly what to do. You keep administering CPR until it says, “analyzing heart rhythm.” When the voice says clear, ensure that no one is touching the patient.

CPR saves lives, and it is relatively easy to administer. Even someone without formal training can do CPR and follow the prompts to operate an AED. And yet, not everyone receives the life-saving care they need right away.

"People always think that someone else is going to step up, but we may be the difference between saving a person's life, so calling 911 is not enough. For every minute you delay starting CPR, a person loses 10% of their brain function. That's why I really push that all adults learn CPR," said Eunice Mathis, a CPR instructor at the Florida Training Academy in Jacksonville.

To find CPR training near you, call Florida Training Center at (904) 551-0918, r contact Acuity CPR and Safety Training at (904) 469-6741.

"Bring the whole family. Even if a child can't do chest compressions, can they recognize that papa isn't responding, and can they call 911? We're offering it. We just need people who actually want to come learn," Mathis said.