Shinty Official Survives Cardiac Arrest Thanks to Quick Action


Stevie Maclachlan, a 56-year-old shinty referee, owes his life to the swift response of players and the presence of a defibrillator after he suffered a cardiac arrest during a match.

Maclachlan began feeling unwell just 12 minutes into Saturday’s MacTavish Cup tie between Caberfeidh and Kinlochshiel in Strathpeffer. “I had a severe pain in my chest – it was getting tighter and tighter. I was down on one knee, I managed to blow my whistle and then everything went black,” he recounted.

Conor Cormack, captain of Kinlochshiel, along with teammate Keith Macrae, who are both firefighters, utilized a defibrillator from Caberfeidh’s clubhouse and administered CPR to revive Maclachlan.

Currently recuperating at home in Muir of Ord after receiving hospital treatment, Maclachlan expressed his gratitude, stating, “I am lucky to be here. I wouldn’t be here if Conor and Keith hadn’t been there. The outcome might not have been as well.”

Reflecting on the incident, Maclachlan emphasized the importance of having defibrillators readily available, expressing his hope that shinty clubs without one would install them. These devices deliver a high-energy shock to the heart during cardiac arrest, aiding in restarting it.

Maclachlan recalled the moment of regaining consciousness, stating, “Conor was a foot away and I asked him what he was doing, and he said ‘I’m glad you’re back’ and I asked ‘from where?’ I said to him ‘if you get out of the road I’ll get up,’ but he said I couldn’t get up, and then it sort of sank in.”

Despite the harrowing experience on the field, Maclachlan noted that the hospital treatment significantly improved his health, remarking, “I feel better than I have done for months.”

Source: BBC

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