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Trudy Chapman: Sudden Cardiac Arrest Story

Trudy Chapman: On 1st October 2011 I suffered a cardiac arrest at home. It was a normal Saturday evening; just like you all have - watching TV, dinner and a few glasses of wine.

The next thing that happened turned our world upside down. Ian looked over to me and I was slumped over - my heart had stopped beating and essentially I was dead.

Thankfully Ian realised something was wrong pretty quickly and dialled 999. He was told to do CPR until the paramedics arrived. By some stroke of luck they arrived very quickly and with the use of a defibrillator were able to get a faint pulse...enough to get me to hospital and further care. I am now fitted with a mini defibrillator of my own!

I am now one of only 3% of people in the UK to be successfully resuscitated following an out of hospital cardiac arrest. A cardiac arrest is not a heart attack. There is (usually) no warning or symptoms (I had none whatsoever) and they can affect anyone at any age, old, young, fit or unfit, healthy or not. The tragic fact is every week in the UK 12 or more children die as a result of a cardiac arrest. Many of those deaths occur in schools, and some could be avoided if schools were equipped with that magic little machine, the defibrillator, and taught how to use them.

That is why myself (along with some special fellow survivors) support Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome - SADS UK. This cardiac charity aims to save lives, provide information, fund research and provide medical equipment such as defibrillators to schools.

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