Life After Sudden Death
Drew Logan was 30 years old and in the best shape of his life. So why did he suddenly die—three times in one night? New research may finally be unlocking the answers to the mystery of sudden cardiac arrest.
Drew Logan doesn’t remember being dead.
He does, however, remember the day he died. Mostly, it was just an ordinary Monday.
It was Oct. 4, 2004, and death was nowhere near Drew’s mind. The 30-year-old fitness coach had spent the day training clients at the gym near his home in Nashville, Tenn. An avid athlete since the age of 5, he’d parlayed his athletic skills and passion for fitness into a successful career as a personal trainer, building a clientele of country music industry professionals and NFL and NBA athletes.
He was in phenomenal shape, with only 5 percent body fat. But later that cool Monday evening, he would find himself face-down on the hallway floor—dead.
In fact, Drew would die not just once, but three times in the same night. The culprit each time: sudden cardiac arrest, a sudden electrical chaos in the heart that stops a heartbeat cold and brings death in mere minutes.
Unlike a heart attack, which occurs when a blocked artery disrupts the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart, causing heart muscle to die, sudden cardiac arrest typically arrives with little to no warning. The electrical havoc disrupts the ventricles, which then quiver uselessly and can no longer pump blood to the body.
It’s an enigmatic and lethal condition that doctors and scientists have long struggled to understand and predict. But now, more than a decade into the most comprehensive community study of sudden cardiac arrest ever undertaken, exciting new clues are emerging that could pave the path for a personalized medicine approach to sudden cardiac arrest—and a way to predict it before it happens.
That’s critical because each year, 300,000 Americans have a sudden cardiac arrest—but only a scant 5 percent survive. For the rest, help either arrives too late, or not at all, as many victims are alone at the time.
Drew was one of the lucky ones.