Christian Eriksen – the importance of CPR and a defib.

Cristian Eriksen’s Cardiac Arrest has placed everything into perspective and it is about time that the education system teaches you how to put CPR and a defibrillator into effective use.

On Saturday afternoon like many others I was excitedly watching Denmark v Finland waiting for that moment where someone scores their nation’s tournament opener. However, everything was soon put into perspective when one of the most distressing moments on a pitch lay before the eyes of millions across televisions worldwide as well as those who were at the game and put all rivalries aside to save a man’s life. To start this article off, I want to send my thoughts out to anyone who has ever saved a life through understanding how to perform CPR as well as wishing Christian Eriksen all the best as he recovers from the incidents in Copenhagen.

Just before half time in Finland’s first ever tournament outing, Inter Milan forward and arguable Spurs legend Eriksen suffered a cardiac arrest and was greeted with a tremendous medical team who ran on the field to offer their services using a defib as his teammates either stood around him in an emotional manner, it has been argued that this was done to offer the 29-year-old privacy, regardless it’s one of the most recognised pictures in world football this year. Simon Kjaer and Kasper Schmeichel looked after Christian’s wife, Sabrina and the rest of the stadium stood lost for words. 

Honestly, I’ve watched many games of football in my life and it is a sport that I devote myself towards. I’ve seen injuries, broken legs etc yet nothing has taken me back as far as seeing a footballing magician receiving CPR in the middle of the game after taking a tumble in the aftermath of a throw-in. It made me emotional yet it also struck home the importance of life itself and what/who you should spend most of your time with. This is a footballing moment that transcends so many subjects and it is one that’s made me think of what the education system should be teaching and how vital pieces of equipment like a defib machine is. 

Since so many have seen and heard about what happened, tributes flew in as they should. However, another side that was put on show was how often situations like this occur without the usage and accessibility to instant first aiders. I’ve heard stories of men dropping on a football pitch during a game in Sunday League and as the stories entered my mind the evidence grew that this could truly happen to anyone, even the most athletic and youngest human/animal you could think of.

Cardiac arrest, which Christian suffered, is described as ‘a sudden, sometimes temporary, cessation of the heart’s functioning’. The cause? An extreme slowing of the heart’s rhythm (bradycardia) and exercise can be a trigger for sudden instances in individuals with an abnormal heart condition. There are other reasons for why these tragic circumstances may occur and there are other heart issues that are evident in other cases. However, it would only be fair and just in explaining how you can help someone who is suffering whilst you are present as I place research into why some technologies and equipment are vital and more than helpful.

As advised by the American Heart Association you should check for the person’s response once you have ensured that the scene is safe. You should then shout for help if you believe that something has occurred by calling 911 and asking for the urgent use of a defib if one is accessible. A defib can be shortened to an AED, if you’re ever confused as time is critical! Once you have pleaded for help you should then check for breath or gasps, as if they are only gasping then it is vital that you start the process of CPR before using the AED for help until the patient starts to breathe or move or until someone with more qualifications arrives at the scene.

I’m going to provide links which answer any questions that you may have below as you may have never been in this situation and it is vital that you know what to do to help out!

How do I do CPR? 

https://www.bhf.org.uk/how-you-can-help/how-to-save-a-life/how-to-do-cpr

How to use a defibrillator effectively?

https://www.bhf.org.uk/how-you-can-help/how-to-save-a-life/defibrillators/how-to-use-a-defibrillator

How do I reduce the chances of suffering a cardiac arrest?

https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/sudden-cardiac-arrest

CPR Facts and Stats:

https://ahainstructornetwork.americanheart.org/AHAECC/CPRAndECC/AboutCPRECC/CPRFactsAndStats/UCM_475748_CPR-Facts-and-Stats.jsp

Christian Eriksen’s current state.

As reported by BBC Football, Christian Eriksen’s doctor stated ‘He was gone. We did cardiac resuscitation, it was a cardiac arrest. We got him back after one defib which is relatively fast. The examinations that we have done so far look fine thus we have no understanding of why it may have happened’. 

The Denmark FA soon commented ‘His condition is stable and he continues to be hospitalised for further examinations. He sent his greetings to his team mates this morning. The team and staff have received crisis assistance and will continue to be there for each other following yesterday’s incident. He’s in great spirits and has told others that he feels ready to go to training!’.

One of the most recognised footballing pictures this year, as the footballing magician’s Denmark teammates stand full of emotion near to the area where he was receiving CPR with the usage of a defibrillator.

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