Tamar Hamlin update: Bills defense makes ‘significant improvement’ following Camille cardiac arrest, medical team says, but his road to recovery could be long



CNN

Buffalo Bills safety Tamar Hamlin It has made “significant progress”. Follow him to the hospital A heart attack in the middle of the game On Monday, doctors said, he is now awake and moving his arms and legs.

Dr. Timothy Pritz, part of the player’s medical team, said Hamlin could communicate by shaking his head, nodding or writing brief notes. Upon awakening, Pritz said, Hamlin’s mind was still on the game as he wrote his first question on a clipboard: “Did we win?”

“So, not only do the lights come on, we know he’s home. And it’s like all cylinders are firing in his brain,” said Britts, who is vice president for clinical operations at University of Cincinnati Health, where Hamlin is being treated.

However, the medical team cautioned that Hamlin’s recovery has several phases ahead. Hamlin — who was sedated and had to be intubated following his collapse — remains critically ill and on a ventilator, Britts said. Doctors did not say exactly when he woke up.

The 24-year-old collapsed Monday during the first quarter of the Bills’ game against the Cincinnati Bengals and was rushed off the field in an ambulance, shocking the packed stadium and leaving his teammates emotional, crying and hugging each other.

The NFL announced Thursday that the game — initially postponed Monday night — has been canceled. The league is working on plans to honor Hamlin ahead of each scheduled game this coming weekend, two people familiar with the matter told CNN’s Oliver Darcy.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced his decision to all clubs Thursday after contacting the leadership of the Bills, Bengals and NFL Players Association, according to a release from the league.

“It’s been a really tough week,” Goodell said. “We continue to focus on Tamar Hamlin’s recovery and are encouraged by the progress in her condition and the overwhelming outpouring of support and care for Tamar and her family from across the country. We are incredibly appreciative of the amazing work of the medical staff, and we appreciate each and every one of them.

Here are the latest developments:

  • Hamlin’s “remarkable recovery,” says the medical team: Although Hamlin remains in intensive care, he is making a “good neurological recovery” and is awake and holding hands with family at the hospital, Britts said Thursday.
  • Tests to determine the cause continue: “This represents a good turnaround in his current care,” Britts said, but “he has many, many more steps ahead of him.” Hamlin’s next big milestone will be breathing on his own without a ventilator, said Dr. William Knight, director of emergency medicine. Tests are still underway to determine the cause of his heart attack, Knight said.
  • Hamlin lost momentum on the field: Surrounded by medical crews on the field, Hamlin lost a pulse and had to administer CPR and defibrillation as fans and teammates watched, Knight said. The doctor added that he collapsed after 30 to 45 minutes after being intubated in the ambulance.
  • Bills are back in action: Team Met on Wednesday and held its first full practice of the week on Thursday in preparation for hosting the New England Patriots on Sunday. Head coach Sean McDermott said the team is getting “increasing updates” from the medical staff from Bills general manager Brandon Beane and head athletic trainer Nate Breske, who have been in Cincinnati. “We keep hearing good news about Damar, and that pushes us forward,” quarterback Josh Allen told reporters Thursday.
  • “People will be forever changed”: Allen said the players have had “some open and honest and deep talks” since their teammate was hospitalized on Monday. “I think it’s a really good thing for our team to put that helmet back on,” he said of returning to practice, “but I’d be lying to you if I didn’t say some people will be changed forever. After being on the field and seeing it in person and feeling those emotions.

News of Hamlin’s wake was met with a rush of messages of support and relief from players across the NFL. Since his collapse, supporters have donated more than $7 million to honor the veteran His charity fundraiser And his jersey has become the top-selling athlete jersey at sports apparel store Fanatics, according to a company spokesperson.

Hamlin’s family and Allen have dismissed online criticism of Cincinnati Bengals receiver Dee Higgins, who bumped into Hamlin moments before he collapsed. A spokesperson for the family said they had reached out to Higgins and “been supportive”.

“I hope he got some relief today,” Allen said of Higgins while speaking to reporters Thursday. He added, “It’s a football game and I hope he doesn’t hold it on himself because he couldn’t have done anything else in that situation.”

Doctors and Bills team members have repeatedly praised the quick response of medical personnel who rushed to Hamlin seconds after he collapsed.

Bills offensive lineman Dion Dawkins tweeted Thursday that assistant athletic trainer Denny Kellington performed CPR on Hamlin as he lay on the field. Coach McDermott on Thursday credited the trainer with saving Hamlin’s life.

“As they say, practice pays off, and in this case it did,” McDermott said in a post-practice news conference dedicated to Hamlin. “But again, the context of it, a helper finding himself in that position, taking what he did, stepping up and taking responsibility as he did — and there were others in the field — was nothing short of amazing and brave, and you’re talking about a true leader in saving Tamar’s life, true. You are talking about a hero.

In audio obtained by CNN of paramedics working on the sidelines when Hamlin collapsed, the crew can be heard calling for all hands to help, saying, “I don’t like how he went down” and “we’re going to need it.” Everyone.”

NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills attributed the rapid medical response to a “60-minute meeting” held before each game between medical teams and NFL officials to locate medical equipment and nearby medical centers and establish a chain. Among other things, command in case of emergency.

In announcing the official cancellation of the Bills-Bengals game, which was suspended after Hamlin’s collapse, the NFL detailed parts of its decision-making process in which the outcome of the game will have no impact on which teams qualify for the playoffs.

The Bills and Bengals have already clinched playoff spots, but they Joking for higher seeds in the American Football Conference postseason.

A decision to play the game would have forced the league to postpone the start of the playoffs by one week, the NFL release explained, affecting all 14 clubs that qualify.

Lastly, the league’s decision before Week 18 allows all clubs to know playoff possibilities before the final game of the regular season.

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