Damar Hamlin and the impact of injuries on athletes, teammates and fans
On Jan. 2, 2023, Damar Hamlin, an NFL athlete playing for the Buffalo Bills, tackled an opposing wide receiver. After taking a blow to the chest, Hamlin initially seemed jarred but fine, until he suddenly collapsed onto his back on the field. Team trainers and nearby paramedics immediately rushed to his side, administering CPR and defibrillation for 10 minutes.
Hamlin was given oxygen, an IV and then placed onto a stretcher and eventually transported off the field by ambulance. The decision was initially made to suspend the game during the event, and then later to postpone it and end play for the night.
In a truly miraculous turn of events, possible only because of the incredible quality and timeliness of care he received right there on the field as well as later on in the hospital, Hamlin has regained consciousness and has been able to speak with loved ones and teammates.
In this video, Prisma Health brought together Drs. Michael Cryer, Zoe Foster, Jeffrey Guy and Peter Loper to discuss the potential impacts of this incident, not just on Damar Hamlin and his family but also on his teammates, fans and everyone who witnessed this devastating health event.
They provided information and answered questions about injuries in athletic sports and Damar Hamlin’s specific incident, including:
- How an impact to the chest can cause certain cardiovascular events that can be dangerous or even deadly
- What it’s like to be a physician on the sidelines during a game
- The importance of preparation and practice for paramedics, team physicians and others
- CPR and defibrillator training for sports physicians and other individuals on the sidelines
- How teams come together and competing teams prepare and plan together in the event of significant injury or another emergency
- The psychological impact of witnessing these injuries and events not just for those who were physically at the game but also fans and those who have since seen it online or on television
- How to speak to your children about traumatic events they may witness on the news or during a game like this
- Physical and cardiac testing for athletes and what may be found during the screening process
- What to know about injuries in teen athletics
- How collisions in football and other sports have changed over the decades
- And more