Tonight on Monday Night Raw, Jerry Lawler suffered what appears to be a heart attack. Reports are stating that Lawler began to convulse at the commentary table, and lost consciousness. As the minutes passed, a report from Michael Cole came out that Lawler was having CPR administered to him in the back. Jerry Lawler was transported by ambulance to the nearest medical facility. Another report from Cole came in that Lawler is breathing on his own, which is an amazingly good sign.
During a heart attack, a blockage in the heart causes all the problems. This blockage is caused by blood clots that form over time. Once the clot becomes large enough, blood flow will be shut off from the part of the heart where the clot forms. The person will have sudden and severe chest pain, and lose consciousness due to no oxygen being able to leave the heart to the rest of the body.
I cannot speak for how the paramedics and doctors run a heart attack in Canada, but I will explain what we do here.
When a person has a heart attack, CPR is started first. This allows manual contraction of the heart, and pumps oxygenated blood to the organs so that the organs do not die. A heart monitor is attached, and a reading of the heart rhythm is obtained. What we see on TV is not what happens in real life. A heart cannot be shocked at any time. There are only a couple of cardiac rhythms that can be shocked. If one of these rhythms is seen, the paramedics will shock the heart, to try and get it to pump on its own. If that does not work, epinephrine, or atropine will be given. These drugs can also get the heart to start again. Paramedics will also stick a tube into the throat of the patient to provide oxygen. Once the tube is in place, he will be attached to a machine that will breath for him. All of this takes place within minutes.
Lawler will be examined at the hospital to determine where the blood clot in his heart is. He will be getting a medication called Heparin, which is a blood thinner. Cardiovascular surgeons will determine what the best method of treatment is, and if open heart surgery, or heart catheterization is a viable choice.
The next 24 hours are critical for Lawler.
That fact that Lawler is breathing on his own is a great sign. It means that the heart is not stopped. As more information comes in, I will update this article.
Cole announced that Lawler is responsive to light. This means his pupils are reacting normally to light stimulus. The pupils of the eyes are one of the first indicators of brain damage due to lack of oxygen. The fact that they are reacting properly is a very good sign.
Cole reports as Raw is going off the air that Lawler is breathing on his own, and his heart is beating on its own.
UPDATE 3 Brian Christopher (Lawler’s son) has released a statement confirming that Lawler had a heart attack.
Louie Babcock has over 6 years experience in emergency medicine.