After His Heart Stopped, Patient Grateful He Received CPR

Keith Hambly received CPR

Keith Hambly isn't sure how long his heart was stopped, but he knows that without CPR he might not be alive.

Two years ago, he had a heart attack while on duty with the Cache County Sheriff's Office search and rescue team. Keith was taken by ambulance to Logan Regional Hospital where he received a percutaneous coronary intervention with two stents from Logan cardiologist Gerald Polukoff, MD.

Keith never expected to have a heart attack and had no pain — in fact he'd completed a swift water rescue certification test swimming in the Green River a few days before. He is a certified CPR instructor himself and says his job keeps him very fit.

Keith Credits CPR for Saving His Life

On the day of his heart attack, Keith was in the Wellsville Mountains searching for an injured hiker with the search and rescue team. After hiking to the top of a trail, he caught a ride back to the command area with the team member on an ATV.

The next thing he knew he woke up in an ambulance.

"An off-duty paramedic quickly realized I wasn't breathing and began CPR on me. By the time the ambulance came I was breathing again," says Keith, who emphasizes the importance of being trained in CPR. "I'm told most people in my situation wouldn't have survived without that quick intervention."

Keith later found out he had two blocked arteries, both at about 95 percent. And while he didn't have the usual red flags that go along with heart disease, such as being overweight, a smoker, or even unhealthy eating habits, he says his family does have some history of heart disease.
 
He is grateful to be alive, and says the most painful part of the experience was healing from a sore chest due to the CPR. "Of course, it's worth it to be here today," he says.
 
"I'm all about promoting CPR awareness," he adds. "I'd want anyone in the same situation to have a chance.
 

How to Perform CPR

In an emergency, CPR can be performed with the following guidelines. Remember to always first call 911.
  1. Kneel directly over the person. 
  2. Place the heel of one hand in the center of the chest, then place the other hand on top of it. 
  3. Push hard and fast. Give 100 to 120 compressions per minute, which is this is same tempo as the song Staying Alive by the Bee Gees. Continue compressions until help arrives.

Watch a video on how to perform CPR from the American Heart Association.

Classes at Intermountain

Intermountain has CPR classes for community members, including classes at Logan Regional for certifying instructors.