Mark Humble's story
When 53-year-old Mark Humble ended up in the hospital on Christmas Eve, he was afraid. In the weeks prior, he was hospitalized for two serious cardiac related events. “I was scared,” Mark recalls. “I didn’t want to go home knowing that I might have another problem with my heart.”
Mark’s cardiac team helped to ease his fears when they told him about the LifeVest wearable defibrillator. They explained that he could wear the LifeVest around the clock to protect him in case he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. The LifeVest would continuously monitor Mark’s heart, and if it detected a life-threatening heart rhythm, the device would deliver a treatment shock that could save his life.
“It was the most amazing feeling in the world,” Mark explained. “Yes, I’m going home and yes, there is a product here to keep me safe.” As he explained to his wife, “This gives me hope that I’m going to be fine when I go home tomorrow.” Mark and his wife fittingly named his LifeVest: “Hope.”
The next day – Christmas Day – Mark was at his relatives’ house. “Hope” was with Mark, providing protection and peace of mind. Mark remembers feeling uneasy as the family gathered for dinner. He sat down, but quickly lost consciousness as he experienced a sudden cardiac arrest. His heart spiked into a dangerous rhythm called “ventricular fibrillation,” or VF. When a person experiences VF, their heart suddenly starts beating so fast that it quivers or shakes instead of pumping blood to the body and brain. It is fatal if not treated in minutes.
“Hope” was there to help. Mark’s LifeVest detected the life-threatening heart rhythm, and as his family looked on, it delivered a treatment shock that restored his normal heart rhythm and saved his life. Mark regained consciousness shortly after the treatment to find that he was surrounded by his family. As Mark described, “If it weren’t for Hope, I wouldn’t have made it.”
Looking back, it was difficult for Mark to adjust to the reality that he had heart problems: "I was a carpenter for 25 years. I'd always been active, and I’d never spent a day in the hospital.” When faced with uncertainty, however, he made the decision to trust in the LifeVest, a therapy that gave him security and comfort.
“You either get busy living or get busy dying,” Mark explained of his decision to wear the LifeVest. “I had motivation to get back to my life, because I still had a life to live.” Today, Mark is busy enjoying life with his three children and four grandchildren—and he has more than a little hope for a bright future.