why buffalo player, Hamlin got injured


Quinn Russell

Photo of the Pleasant Valley Football Field covered in snow.

Quinn Russell, Design Manager

On Monday, Jan 2 of 2023,Damar Hamlin ended up being given CPR on the field after a rough tackle, Hamlin stood up and immediately collapsed. Hamlin, a professional football player who plays Safety, went into cardiac arrest at the age of  24 years old. 

Football fans were quick to jump to conclusions without knowing the extent of his injuries. Some people believed it was caused by the tackle and others believed it was because of the COVID-19 vaccine. The NFL was quick to respond and got him into a hospital as soon as they could yet no information about what happened to the public left people wondering what happened.

Parker Dummer is a football player for the Pleasant Valley High School football team as a senior, “I feel like the Damar Hamlin incident proves that the NFL does care for the players and their wellbeing in contrast to the Tua Tagovailoa situation from the beginning of the season, where they allowed for him to play through a concussion and continued the game after he was carried off the field,” Dummer continued., “Though I do think he just got hit really hard in the chest, causing his heart to stop.”

In 2011, the PV community witnessed a similar injury of one of its own. Brett Greenwood,a Hawkeye football player, was  using the PV practice field for a workout and ended up collapsing due to cardiac arrest. Similar to Hamlin, Greenwood was four days away from turning 24 years old. Greenwood had no history of cardiovascular issues within his family. 

Pam Cinadr, a retired PV nurse, was there when Greenwood went into cardiac arrest, “His arrest had nothing to do with a hit to the chest, he has a preexisting condition,” she stated.  “His treatment was very similar as that of Damar Hamlin, lowering his body temperature, a drug induced coma and all the constant critical care he needed.”

These are just two examples of two healthy athletes going into unexplained cardiac arrest. Others such as Fabrice Muamba in 2012 and Christian Eriksen, a Danish Footballer in 2020, have similar stories.

However, is young athletes’ cardiac arrest a complete coincidence or is there a chance this may happen again?

Males are generally at a higher risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) than women. Males typically develop it at a much younger age.

Though the leading cause of young athletes dying is cardiac arrest; 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 80,000 young athletes die suddenly each year because of cardiac arrest. The causes can vary from thickened heart muscle, heart rhythm disorders, blunt chest injury or congenital heart defect. One of these can be an explanation for why these athletes 

Hamlin’s cardiac attack is not something that has never occurred before. It has happened plenty of times to other young professional athletes, including in the Pleasant Valley  community l. Young athletes should be aware and understand that cardiac arrest is a possibility even if they are perfectly healthy.