Man thanks device for saving his life - WNEM TV 5

Man thanks device for saving his life

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MID-MICHIGAN (WNEM) -

While it's scary to think about, a heart can stop at any second for any number of reasons.

That's what happened to one Mid-Michigan man who is still here to tell his story. It's all thanks to a single piece of technology, a wearable defibrillator.

It was that device that saved Loyd Darnell's life.

"If I didn't have it, I wouldn't be here," he said.

The 72-year-old and his wife Sandy credit the device for saving his life.

"Hard to believe that little battery pack brought me back," Loyd Darnell said.

He suffered a heart attack earlier this year. His doctor at the Michigan Cardiovascular Institute recommended he try using a wearable defibrillator called the life vest.

"Not very comfortable, but just like wearing a life vest," Loyd Darnell said.

Days after he began wearing the vest, he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. Lloyd Darnell lost consciousness, but his wife clearly remembered the whole thing.

"His arms were down to the side and his head forward and I cam around the corner and it hit him and he was like a marionette and he sat up and his shoulders came back. [It] scared the bejesus out of me," Sandy Darnell said.

He survived thanks to the life vest. Lloyd Darnell now has an implantable defibrillator.

Dr. Asim Yunus said the life vest is a great bridge for patients who have had a cardiac event and are being considered for a defibrillator implant.

"If they're going to have an event, the vast majority have a first life saving event within a month. And we as doctors, looking at who to implant a defibrillator, don't even access these patients for two or three months," Yunus said.

Sandy Darnell is grateful for the device.

"This thing they've created saved his life," she said.

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