Fabrice Muamba, 23, suffered cardiac arrest during this past weekend’s FA Cup showdown between Bolton and Tottenham. The shocking incident rocked the soccer world to its very core, and reminded us all just how fragile health can truly – even when you’re talking about the health of the most fit athletes in the world.
After Muamba fell to the ground on Saturday, paramedics immediately rushed in and tended to him. It is unknown whether or not it was the work that those paramedics did that kept him alive, though it did later come out that they weren’t actually able to revive him on scene. Eventually, the midfielder was taken to London Chest Hospital where he remains to this day.
He is currently in critical condition.
On Wednesday, Bolton’s team doctor revealed just how serious things got for Muamba this past weekend. Apparently, the 23-year-old’s heart literally stopped beating for 78 minutes – meaning he was essentially dead for over an hour.
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"They were working on him without his heart having a muscular beat,'' Jonathon Tobin said (via Sports Illustrated). "(Seventy-eight minutes) without his heart beating and without him breathing. In effect, he was dead in that time ... throughout the whole resuscitation period you are worrying.
"You know the longer the resuscitation goes on the less chance there is of survival, but this is slightly different. This is a very fit 23-year-old.''
Muamba did not start independently breathing again until this past Monday. At this point, it is unknown if the talented youngster will ever play soccer again.