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What Damar Hamlin’s horrific heart arrest can teach us

Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field after hitting his chest into a receiver’s shoulder. His heart stopped, and first responders used an AED to shock his heart back into rhythm. Without immediate treatment, ventricular fibrillation is fatal. Commotio cordis is extremely rare in football; only three cases have been documented. Studies using animal models found that time to defibrillation was the essential determining factor. National Athletic Trainers’ Association encourages youth baseball and ice hockey organizations to use softer baseballs and pucks.