THE family of a man left brain damaged and fighting for his life after suffering a heart attack have backed the Mail’s campaign to have defibrillators installed in every gym in Burton and South Derbyshire.
Kathleen Partridge placed her weight behind the bid after learning that her brother Brian Judd might now not be seriously ill in hospital if one of the lifesaving devices had been in place at a local gym when he suffered his cardiac arrest.
She has decided to speak out on behalf of her 64-year-old sibling and his family in a bid to make sure that nobody else ever has to suffer the same fate as him.
She told the Mail: “If you had a cardiac arrest at the gym, would you expect it to be equipped with a defibrillator which might save your life? If so, you may be disappointed.
“There is no legal requirement for gyms open to the public to have defibrillators.
“This was brought home to me recently when my very fit brother had a cardiac arrest without any warning while exercising in a gym.
“The gym was not equipped with a defibrillator and ambulance staff resuscitated him and took him to hospital.
“The delay in resuscitation has resulted in severe brain damage because of the lack of oxygen getting to his brain for more than 10 minutes.
“If he lives, he will never have anything approaching a normal life. He is barely able to utter words, has no cognition, no memory and does not even recognise any members of his own family including his children.
“His doctors have confirmed to me that had he received defibrillation within the few minutes after his cardiac arrest, there was a good chance he would not have suffered brain damage and should have made a full recovery.
“Next time you go to the gym ask if they have a defibrillator and trained staff.
“At this stage, it is clearly too late to do anything for my brother but I would like to see all gyms which are open to the public having defibrillators.”