A Lewisburg woman credits a wearable defibrillator for recently saving her life while she slept.
Barbara Campbell told Nashville's News 2 she now feels great, but the last two years of her life has been a different story.
“Over the two year period I saw 12 doctors,” she recalled.
No one was able to figure out what was wrong until a lung doctor thought he noticed a blockage in an artery.
“I had a 75% blocked artery,” Campbell explained.
Campbell said she finally received the help she needed from a cardiologist at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville.
“We found that her coronary arteries had severe narrowing, severe blockages. We are able to open those up and restore normal blood flow to her heart by putting in multiple stints,” Dr. John McPherson said.
Despite placing the stints, Campbell was not out the woods yet.
Since Campbell also suffered from a weakened heart muscle, Dr. McPherson prescribed her a new wearable defibrillator called a LifeVest.
“You put it on like a coat kind of and it fastens in the front,” Campbell explained.
McPherson added, “If the heart suddenly goes out of rhythm it will generate an alarm and if the patient doesn't act on that alarm then it will deliver an electric shock and restart the heart.”
After wearing the LifeVest for three months, Campbell said her heart stopped beating while she was asleep.
She recalled, “I woke up, just like waking up from a sleep, and my husband was walking around the bedroom fully dressed with the telephone in his hand saying, ‘do I need to call your doctor or 911?'”
Dr. McPherson told Nashville's News 2 without the LifeVest, Barbara's outcome may have been different.
“There is no doubt in my mind that this device saved Barbara's life,” he said.
Barbara added, “If I didn't have [the LifeVest] on, I wouldn't have had Christmas this year with my family.”
Campbell has since received an internal pace maker and defibrillator and is undergoing cardiac rehab.