Australian Man Revived After Being Clinically Dead For 40 Minutes

on May 15 2013 2:06 AM
CPR training
Employees at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center listen to Red Cross trainers Ismael Anoumatacky and Bob Fulton. Flickr via Creative Commons

An Australian man deemed clinically dead for more than 40 minutes was revived following the use of a new cardiopulmonary recitation (CPR) machine called the AutoPulse.

According to the Herald Sun, Colin Fiedler of Dandenong, Australia, suffered a heart attack last June and was revived at The Alfred hospital after being clinically dead for 40 minutes. The Alfred announced on Tuesday that Fiedler, 39, is one of three people who were revived between 40 minutes and an hour after their clinical deaths.

"I'm so grateful, more than I could ever say," Fiedler told the Herald Sun.

So what exactly is the AutoPulse that was able to revive Fiedler after 40 minutes of clinical death? According the manufacturer's website, the AutoPulse is a CPR machine that performs compressions at the proper rate much more effectively than a human can. With the AutoPulse, a patient’s entire chest is compressed instead of just a single point being compressed (like when a human administers CPR).

“It keeps chest pressure continuous and closer to therapeutic level,” EMT volunteer David Silvia told ProCPR Blog, “which in turn helps us administer the drugs. And there are no interruptions in CPR because you can shock, and give the drugs while it is running.”

While reviving Fiedler, doctors combined the AutoPulse with a heart-lung machine that kept blood  and oxygen circulating throughout his body. 

Currently, the AutoPulse is only available at The Alfred hospital, though manufacturers hope to expand its use throughout Australia soon. Fiedler says he was given the choice between two hospitals in the ambulance and is glad he chose the one with the AutoPulse.

"For some reason, I said The Alfred, which is pretty lucky because they are the only one that has it," Fiedler told the Herald Sun.