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Published June 29, 2016
AED and Quick Thinking Save Life of 24 Hour Fitness Client
Kevin Paulsen and Kiley Yeaman with MOFD responders Photo provided

It was a normal day of early spring at 24 Hour Fitness. In the front of the facility, rows of clients of all ages, led by the gym's optimistic mood music, were expending calories on treadmills and stationary bikes, while in the back a mostly masculine crowd was studiously working on developing their muscle mass.
Then, what no gym manager ever wants to see happen took place - a young man collapsed, struck by a sudden heart attack. Luckily for him, both the manager on the floor and two patrons did not lose their cool and, using an automated external defibrillator (AED), were able to resuscitate him as paramedics got to the scene.
Kiley Yeaman, the club's young operations manager, remembers the high pressure of the situation. When the young patron fell, two club members, Kevin Paulsen and Michael Bellotti, started manual CPR while another called for her assistance. As soon as she got to the weight training area and assessed the situation, she understood what was going on and rushed to get the AED that is installed at the club, and decided to use it on the client. She had never done it before, other than on a mannequin during a CPR certification class.
Under the stress of the situation, Yeaman was not scared, but rather felt the situation was somewhat surreal. She added that she felt lucky afterward to have been able to put her emotions aside and focus on what had to be done. At some point a patron asked her if she really knew what she was doing, but remembering her training, she was confident enough to proceed.
Yeaman grabbed the detachable paddles, put them on the young man, then the machine detected the irregularity and advised her what to do next. She says this was easy enough. The machine told her to shock the patient and she did, twice.
What she later learned is that the survival rate using CPR alone is 10 percent, while it is 60 percent when an AED can be used.
Another worker had called 911 and Moraga-Orinda Fire District paramedics were on the scene as she applied the second shock. The patient was taken to the hospital and completely recovered.
The young man's brother came back to the club to thank everybody, but Yeaman was not present.
The Moraga Town Council wrote a proclamation to thank Yeaman, Paulsen and Bellotti, for their bravery. At the meeting where they were presented the document, MOFD Capt. Vince Matulich said that it was an excellent example of the community-based approach to heart attacks that helps the emergency responder do their job. AED, and early CPR increase the effectiveness of professional advanced measures.
Yeaman is a fulltime employee of 24 hours Fitness as well as a fulltime biology student at Las Positas College in Livermore. She says that the experience she had has given her the push to declare biology as her major and to study toward a profession in the healthcare sector.
She says she felt humbled by the experience - for her it shows the importance of being trained because anyone can learn it and it can make a difference.
AEDs are portable devices that check the heart rhythm and can send an electric shock to the heart to try to restore a normal rhythm. AEDs are used to treat sudden cardiac arrest. Yeaman says that all the branches of that gym are equipped with AEDs and that the units include pediatric pads. AEDs are found in more and more public places and businesses, including some that were recently installed at Moraga Commons.

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