The Buffalo Bills’ Damar Hamlin has been released from a medical facility in Buffalo, according to his team’s statement on Wednesday. He was hospitalized for over a week after experiencing a cardiac arrest during a “Monday Night Football” game earlier this month.
Hospital officials had stated that the Bills’ 24-year-old safety had been displaying indications of rapid progress prior to being released from Buffalo General Medical Center in New York.
Dr. Jamie Nadler, the physician in charge of Damar Hamlin’s care in Buffalo, stated on Twitter that after conducting multiple tests and consultations with the team physicians, they are certain that Damar can be discharged and continue his rehabilitation at home with the Bills.
Initially, Hamlin was admitted to a hospital in Cincinnati after his heart unexpectedly stopped following a tackle during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on January 2. However, on Monday, he was transferred to a facility in Buffalo as his doctors decided that his condition had improved sufficiently for the move.
The medical team at Buffalo hospital was investigating the cause of Hamlin’s cardiac arrest. The group of hospitals, Kaleida Health, which includes Buffalo medical center, stated that they were trying to determine if any pre-existing conditions contributed to the event. This sudden and unexpected event received widespread attention and led to a tremendous display of support for the young NFL player.
The Bills announced on Twitter that on Tuesday, Hamlin underwent a thorough medical assessment, including tests for cardiac, neurological, and vascular health.
The reason for Hamlin’s heart attack has not been revealed to the public.
“Sending a special thanks to Buffalo General for the love and support since my arrival! Please keep me in your prayers,” tweeted Hamlin on Tuesday.
Bills coach Sean McDermott stated on Wednesday that Hamlin will have the final say on when he returns to the team after his recovery.
“I am thankful that he is back with his family, including his brother, which is wonderful,” stated McDermott during a press conference on Wednesday, as the Bills geared up to face the Miami Dolphins in a playoff match on Sunday. There is currently no set timeline for Hamlin’s comeback to professional football.
“We will defer to him on when he will be with the team. Our main concern is his health and well-being, so we will support his decision and welcome him back when he feels prepared,” stated McDermott.
During his time in critical condition in Cincinnati, Hamlin was given sedatives and put on a ventilator for several days. According to his doctors on Monday, the breathing tube was taken out on Friday morning and Hamlin started walking with assistance that afternoon.
The doctors stated that the health care team’s main goal was to stabilize Hamlin’s condition. They were able to upgrade his status on Monday as his organ systems were stable and he no longer required intensive nursing or respiratory therapy.
Dr. Timothy Pritts, chief of surgery at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, stated earlier this week that the patient is progressing at a normal or even faster rate after the life-threatening event he experienced. The patient is making significant strides in his recovery.
Pritts stated on Monday that the typical recovery time for a cardiac arrest is several weeks to months. However, Hamlin has been surpassing that timeline at every step and has not experienced any neurological damage.
A quick response was crucial in saving Hamlin.
After an open-field tackle against a Bengals wide receiver, Hamlin suddenly collapsed. Medical personnel quickly responded and administered CPR on the field, ultimately saving his life.
Hamlin’s heart had stopped, and medical responders revived it twice before putting him into an ambulance and taking him to the hospital. The immediate actions of medical personnel were vital to “not just saving his life, but his neurological function,” said Pritts.
His teammates, the other players, and millions of fans were unsettled when they witnessed Hamlin suddenly fall on his back after standing up from the tackle.
The NFL initially rescheduled the game but ultimately decided to cancel it, a move that some former football players viewed as a change in focus towards prioritizing the mental and physical well-being of players.
Currently, the Bills are promoting the importance of learning CPR, a crucial skill that can save lives.
According to the statement, the team is committed to providing resources such as CPR certifications, automated external defibrillator units, and guidance for creating cardiac emergency response plans in the Buffalo community. The Bills urge their fans to demonstrate their support by obtaining CPR certification.
This report was contributed to by Jason Hanna of CNN.