Entries in Little League (2)


Boy Goes Into Cardiac Arrest at Little League Game

Zoonar/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- An 11-year-old boy was revived after going into cardiac arrest after being hit by a pitch during a  Monday night Little League game at Cook Park in Colonie, N.Y.

It was a balmy night in the Albany suburb. In the bottom of the first inning the little leaguer went up to bat. The ball struck him in the chest, causing him to collapse to the ground.

He had suffered from a condition called commotio cordis. It is incredibly rare, occurring only three to four times a year nationally and mostly in young boys while playing sports.

“It’s an agitation of the heart,” said Colonie EMS Chief Peter Berry. “It happens when a sports player suffers blunt force trauma. If it hits just right, it disrupts the heart’s electric signals and sends the child into cardiac arrest.”

Minutes after the boy collapsed, Prevratil, the Colonie Little League president and manager for the opposing team, leapt into action. He, other coaches and the umpire ran over to the boy while someone immediately called 911.

For about four minutes, Prevratil was on the ground with the boy trying to keep him alert. However, as his breathing grew shallower and his pulse stopped, the CPR-certified Prevratil knew that he had to act and began giving chest compressions to the boy.  Thirty seconds after compressions began, the boy started breathing sporadically and a police officer showed up and continued CPR treatments. A minute after that, EMTs arrived and administered two shocks to the boy’s chest with a defibrillator.

He regained consciousness and was transported to Albany Medical Center. Berry said that the boy is “doing very well” and is “in good spirits.”

According to Berry, 65 percent of children that go into commotio cordis die from it.

Little League International mandates all of its coaches are trained to use an automatic external defibrillator and Berry thinks that the training could even go further.

“It might be a good idea to mandate Little League CPR training.  It’s something we feel very strongly about. Early recognition and initiation of CPR is so important,” he said.

“You never know when you’re going to need it [training]. Thank God I had it,” Prevratil said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


9-Year-Old Dies Walking to Little League Game

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(LAS VEGAS) -- A 9-year-old boy collapsed and died Tuesday night as he was walking to his Little League baseball game in Las Vegas. Spencer Melvin was walking to the baseball field with his father and brother, who were his coaches.

“The hardest part was watching his father, try desperately to save Spencer’s life,” says witness Jennifer Riley told ABC News affiliate KTNV. “I was walking right by them when it happened. No one knew what was going on.”

A statement on the Peccole Little League website said, “Medics and volunteers tried everything to save the child but were unable to revive him.”

Dr. Barry Love, director of Pediatric Electrophysiology at Mount Sinai Medical Center, says that sudden death in apparently healthy children is rare, affecting about 3.4 of every 100,000 individuals.

“First off, it is not due to a ‘heart attack’ in the way that we commonly use the term to describe a condition in adults that results from a sudden blockage of flow to the heart muscle,” said Love.

Love said the most common cause of sudden death is a condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and the second most common cause are abnormalities of the way the coronary arteries arise from the aorta.

“In this rare condition, there can be episodic spasm of this abnormal coronary artery leading to lack of blood to the heart.  This condition is very difficult to detect especially in a previously asymptomatic individual,” said Love.

Other conditions that can lead to sudden death are a weak heart muscle or electrical abnormalities of the heart, said Love.

Dr. Daphne Hsu, division chief of Pediatric Cardiology at The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore Hospital, said Spencer could have suffered from ventricular tachycardia, an extremely rapid heartbeat.

“With ventricular tachycardia, the heart beats so fast that it cannot deliver enough oxygen to the brain and body and the child dies,” said Hsu.

The cause of Spencer’s death won’t be known until an autopsy is performed.

The Peccole Little League is selling jersey patches in honor of Spencer, proceeds from which will go to his family to help pay for medical and funeral costs.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio