NC Woman Performs CPR, Defibrillates 17-Year-Old Daughter Who Suffered Unexplained Cardiac Arrest

This is an emergency scene including both a fire engine and an ambulance.
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A North Carolina mother saved her daughter’s life by performing CPR after she collapsed and went into cardiac arrest while warming up for a cheerleading competition.

Keianna Joe, a cheerleader who was competing Sunday at Broughton High School in Raleigh, North Carolina, was participating in a stunt when her teammates noticed something was wrong, WRAL reported.

“They had just gotten finished with the very first stunt. At that point of the stunt, they come down to where the girls are holding her in a seated position. When she got to that position, she was unresponsive,” her mother, Andrea Joe, told the outlet.

WRAL noted Keianna’s coach initially believed she was having a seizure before making the horrifying discovery that she did not have a pulse.

“I saw her coach came running out of the back door of the other building screaming just frantically, ‘Get an ambulance. Get an ambulance. We need the ambulance here now,’” Andrea recalled to TODAY.

Luckily for Keianna, her mother, a certified medical assistant, knew just what to do and immediately began performing CPR.

Andrea “took over CPR, administering about 3 rounds,” an account written by Andrea’s sister read.

“I just took over. I know CPR, I know how to do this. This is my baby and I have to save her,” Andrea explained to TODAY.

When the Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) machine arrived, Andrea administered the needed shock and was able to restore her daughter’s breathing, per WRAL.

The outlet noted Keianna was initially taken to WakeMed Hospital before being transferred to Duke Medical Center.

TODAY reported Keianna was assessed to have suffered a cardiac arrest, and though doctors were unable to discover the cause in her case, such events in people as young as Keianna often result from preexisting conditions.

A series of GoFundMe updates written by Keiana’s aunt reveals the teenager gradually recovered over the next week after having initially been placed in a medically induced coma.

Doctors ultimately decided Keiana needed an “ICD (implantable cardiac defibrillator)” a device that is “usually put just under the skin by the collar bone and is used to detect and stop arrhythmias by delivering electric shocks as needed to restore a regular heart beat,” read a GoFundMe update.

Describing the trip home from the hospital, Andrea said she was overcome with gratitude for her daughter she helped save. 

“And I made her hold my hand, and I just cried because she’s with me,” she told TODAY. “‘She’s here. She’s right next to me. And I’ve got her and it’s the best feeling ever.”


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