Teacher has Heart Attack in the Classroom, Students Call for Help

A pizza party at Clark Montessori High School was suddenly cut short when math teacher Jim Schad, 58, passed out at his desk. “I had started feeling pains in the back of my shoulders,” Jim says. “The kids thought I was sleeping. When I regained consciousness, I told them to get help.”

An emergency squad soon arrived. During the drive to Good Samaritan Hospital, paramedics hooked Jim up to an EKG machine, which indicated a heart attack in progress. The information was transferred electronically to the hospital’s Emergency Department via a special transmitter given to squads throughout the city by TriHealth.

A cardiac catheterization team was immediately activated at Good Samaritan Hospital. Upon arrival at the hospital, Jim was promptly assessed by Interventional Cardiologist William Martin MD. Then, he was taken directly to the Catheterization Lab.

Dr. Martin and the Cardiac Catheterization Lab staff went to work on Jim’s 100- percent-blocked right coronary artery. Dr. Martin used a procedure that has gained popularity with patients at Good Samaritan Hospital Heart & Vascular Center: a cardiac catheterization using a catheter through an artery in the wrist versus using the traditional femoral artery in the thigh.

heart attack - Jim Schad

Within 15 minutes, Jim’s artery was opened. Then, a stent was placed in the artery to prevent further blockage, and shortly after, Jim was sitting up in recovery. As Dr. Martin recounts, “Because we went through the wrist, Jim was sitting up by the time his family arrived. He was joking around with his brother when his father-in-law walked in.” Jim’s father-in-law was upset that Dr. Martin didn’t seem to be taking Jim’s condition seriously. He was amazed to learn that the procedure had already been completed. Dr. Martin explained that because the catheter entered Jim’s body through his wrist artery there was no need for him to lie flat for several hours, as Jim’s father-in-law had experienced years earlier.

In addition to a faster recovery, the wrist approach also benefits patients because it has fewer bleeding complications. About 90 percent of patients are eligible for this approach, Dr. Martin confirms, and all heart patients at Good Samaritan Hospital are viewed as potential candidates.

Jim believes, “The fact that I was healthy made my procedure and recovery easier.” Cardiac Rehab at Good Samaritan furthered his progress. “I’ve recovered 100 percent, and I feel great.”

Tags Heart

Last Updated: October 06, 2014