A sophomore pitcher for a Kansas high school baseball team is recovering in hospital after suffering a heart attack while on the mound Monday night.
As reported by Kansas City NBC affiliate KSHB and Fox affiliate WDAF, Olathe (Kan. ) West High School pitcher Brennan Connell collapsed while on the mound during a game at Blue Valley (Kan.) Southwest High School, where the 16-year-old was pitching in a varsity baseball game.
Luckily for Connell, he was surrounded by both the people and assets needed to save his life. Blue Valley Southwest had an available automatic external defibrillator (AED), which an athletic trainer, nurse and doctor on site — Dr. Kortnee Sorbin — were able to use to quickly restart Connell’s heart after he suffered cardiac arrest.
“You kind of just turn the switch and forget everyone else is there,” Sorbin told WDAF. “You don’t really think. You just act.”
“He was breathing. We weren’t sure if he had a seizure or what was going on. They turned him on his side, and he did start to progress into the more ominous breathing. So we put the AED on him, and those are important things. That AED saved his life.”
Now, Sorbin is recovering at Children’s Mercy Hospital, a lucky patient who happened to have a cardiac event in precisely the right place at precisely the right time to receive the best aid possible. While doctors have yet to determine what caused his cardiac arrest, though statistics hold that it’s most likely his arrest was caused by a previously undiagnosed heart defect.