Life-Saving Cardiac Care: She Put Her Heart in Our Hands

When Ellen Porter woke up, “I had had cardiac arrest for about 36 hours.” Porter’s story exemplifies both the best- and worst-case scenarios in emergency cardiac care.

Dr. Jeffery Goldberger, chief of cardiology at the University of Miami Health System, said Ellen’s situation was very unusual. “With this kind of protracted cardiac arrest … they’d never survive.”

But with the sustained efforts of her UHealth doctors and advanced medical interventions not available at many institutions, Ellen did survive.

“Usually they revive somebody only so many times,” said Ellen, who was given more than 150 shocks by the UHealth cardiology team. “I asked them ‘Why did you keep going?’ And he said, ‘If you were still fighting, we were still fighting for you.’ And, boy, did they.”

Learn more about the life-saving treatments she received after going into cardiac arrest on her trip to Miami with her family.