'Literally He Was Dead': Melbourne Man Brought Back To Life After His Heart Stopped For 90 Minutes
A 60-year-old man was dead in his home for 90 minutes before paramedics were miraculously able to bring him back to life.
Alistair Blake was found cold, unresponsive and turning blue by his wife Melinda after she awoke in the middle of the night to use the bathroom.
She told The Herald Sun she had begun CPR before calling paramedics, thinking he would die but hoping for a movie miracle.
“I knew he was dying, that we were in trouble and I was on my own down at the beach house," she told The Herald Sun.
She used the first aid skills she learned during a course a few weeks earlier to perform CPR and called emergency services.
“When he was dying on the floor I was saying to him ‘c’mon, c’mon, you have to be a pa, you have to be around’," she said.
Melinda said she knew he'd been unresponsive for "too long" but assumed once the paramedics arrived they'd revive him using a defibrillator -- "like in the movies".
The 2019 incident isn't the first time Blake had gone into cardiac arrest. He also suffered heart attacks at 41 and 50.
But he was thought to be a healthy middle-aged man. On the same day his heart gave out, he had cycled 54km.
Blake told the publication he considered his survival a "miracle".
During their marathon attempt at revival, paramedics gave Blake adrenaline and eight shocks from a defibrillator.
Rosebud MICA paramedic Carl Luke said there was a point where they thought their efforts were futile and Melinda acknowledged her "husband was dead".
A policeman also told Melinda paramedics had worked for a long time to no avail to which she said she couldn't let her husband die on the floor at their dream beach house.
She worried about how she would tell their children Amanda, 31, Kimberley, 29, and Thomas, 26.
Then, a divine miracle happened.
Paramedics detected faint pulses and shaking in Blake's chest. The beat eventually strengthened and stabilised before he was rushed to Frankston Hospital.
He then had emergency surgery to open a blocked artery before medical staff cooled his body down to protect his brain.
Professor Ravi Tiruvoipati from Frankston Hospital said Blake should not have recovered the way he did.
"In Alistair’s case [he was dead for] nearly one hour and 30 minutes -- him surviving to this extent is remarkable," he said.
That night Alistair suffered two episodes of polymorphic ventricular tachycardia and his body became full of fluid.
He said his memories of the event are jumbled and his first clear recollection was of being wheeled out of intensive care.
He was fitted with a pacemaker and defibrillator before being discharged the following day.
“This is a guy that by all accounts should be dead but he’s alive and has made a miraculous recovery,” Profesor Jamie Layland said.
“I actually nicknamed him Lazarus because literally he was dead and they were just about to pull out and stop treating him. In those few minutes he came back.”
Blake has since welcomed a new granddaughter and celebrated his 60th birthday.