Stan Goldstein from Potomac, Maryland suffers cardiac arrest while cheering for his Alma Mater’s basketball team. He was lucky emergency responders were close by and trained to respond to emergency situations like these. Healthforce Training Center offers different CPR training and certifications suited to their needs and requirements.
He has supported his alma mater's men's basketball team at home games for more than 50 years by donning his red, black, white, and gold — the colors of the University of Maryland Terrapins—attire.
He started attending games in the 1990s after the team invited him to fly on their charter plane along with other donors.
Stan, 75, left Potomac, Maryland, in January to attend a game in Iowa City, Iowa. That evening, he ate dinner with Terrapins workers. The following day, he treated the workers to brunch at a spot that dates back to the 1950s and is famous for its pie milkshakes. He indulged himself with a rich chocolate bourbon pecan pie shake, and then they next proceeded to the arena.
Stan sat down close to the Terps bench to see the warm-ups. The Terps played well once the game got underway. Unexpectedly, they were in the lead. Sara watched the game from home as usual and texted Stan about it.
Iowa lost possession of the ball near the Maryland bench just before halftime. With 0.7 seconds left on the clock, the Terps took over, but they tossed the ball out of bounds, giving it back to Iowa. Stan, who acknowledges that he "takes games seriously, possibly far too seriously," leaped to his feet in annoyance.
His vision wavered abruptly. The entire scene became white. As the buzzer for halftime sounded and the court cleared, he passed out in his seat. He then went unconscious.
Several EMTs across the court heard a disturbance by the Terps bench and hurried over. Stan had no breath. He wasn't beating, either. He was having a cardiac arrest.
EMTs began performing CPR. The medical director of the arena also hurried over. Stan was revived. As soon as he was stabilized, the staff transported him into the training area on a gurney.
He suffered a second heart arrest there. His heart was revived by the EMTs using an AED, or automated external defibrillator.
Stan was taken to a local hospital in an ambulance. Blood tests and heart imaging did not reveal any cause for the cardiac arrests. Stan had never before had an erratic heartbeat. Doctors did not believe that the seven-year-old cardiac surgery he had was to blame.
Stan remarked, "They indicated it was an electrical problem, not a plumbing problem. It worried me that they couldn't say for sure why I had a cardiac arrest."
Sara was astonished to get a call from a Maryland employee while she was back in Maryland. Stan suffered a cardiac arrest, he told her. She requested a visit from their daughter, who lives close by.
Her phone rang once more an hour later. Stan's phone was the one that was making the call. When he awoke, he informed her what had occurred. "It was a huge relief," she remarked. She purchased a ticket for Iowa City.
To receive an implantable cardioverter defibrillator, or ICD, Stan underwent surgery. It keeps track of his heartbeat and shocks him if it ever exhibits a risky rhythm.
"It comforts me," he declared.
The arena doctor visited Stan while he was in the hospital. Stan's life was saved because of quick CPR and the AED, as the doctor illustrated on a whiteboard.
As it was halftime and there were no barriers on the court at the moment, Stan commented, "I was fortunate with where and when it happened." "I was in the right place at the right moment. I could have ended up in a mortuary instead of a hospital."
Stan's three children visited him, and he also received a lot of calls from people who wished him well, including the head coach of Iowa, the interim head coach and athletic director of Maryland, former coaches, and the president of the University of Maryland. The Terps sent their wishes for a quick recovery in a video.
Stan began a cardiac rehabilitation regimen at home, working out on a treadmill, elliptical, and stationary bike.
A card eventually arrived in the mail for him. It was a well-wisher from the ICU nurses at the hospital in Iowa. He said, "They went above and beyond."
Stan now works out at home several times a week and walks around his neighborhood to stay in shape.
At the close of the previous season, Stan was able to recover enough to attend many games. When the schedule for this season was released in August, he started making trip arrangements right away. Every game, including one on January 15 in Iowa City, he'll be at.
He wants to meet with Iowa's head coach and thank the EMTs and arena doctor who saved his life by taking them out to dinner. He has already expressed his gratitude by giving to the University of Iowa to help with the cost of additional AEDs, "so that others get the same fantastic outcome that I did."
Stan remarked that Iowans "were very exceptional" and that this season "should be entertaining and exciting."