Doctors Reveal What Damar Hamlin Asked After Waking Up

Doctors Reveal What Damar Hamlin Asked After Waking Up
Safety Damar Hamlin #3 of the Buffalo Bills walks off the field after being ejected for a hit on wide receiver Jakobi Meyers #16 of the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., on Dec. 1, 2022. (Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Jack Phillips
1/5/2023
Updated:
1/5/2023
0:00

Doctors at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center revealed Thursday that Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin made significant progress after he collapsed during Monday night’s game and said he asked about who won.

“We’re in the situation where we wanted to allow him to gradually wake up as the rest of his body was healing, and last night he was able to emerge and follow commands and even asked who had won the game,” Dr. Timothy Pritts said Thursday, Fox News reported.  “When he asked did we win, the answer is yes, Damar, you won the game of life.”

The doctors said Hamlin cannot speak and has been communicating with the medical team by pen and paper, and also through head movement. They stressed that the Bills player still remains in critical condition.

“He continues to be critically ill. He continues to undergo intensive care in our surgical and trauma ICU,” Pritts said. “He’s being cared for by ICU neuro-critical care teams, trauma surgery, and a cardiology team, as well as our expert nurses and respiratory therapists. They are attending to him, and he still has significant progress that he needs to make. But this marks a really good turning point in his ongoing care.”

According to health agencies, cardiac arrest outside of hospitals are often fatal events. And those who survive are often left with brain injuries and neurological impairment.

In order for him to be upgraded to stable from critical, Pritts said doctors will have to be able to remove Hamlin’s breathing tube. He will also have to display more respiratory and neurological improvement.

Buffalo Bills players huddle after teammate Damar Hamlin #3 collapsed following a tackle against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first quarter at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio, on Jan. 2, 2023. (Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
Buffalo Bills players huddle after teammate Damar Hamlin #3 collapsed following a tackle against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first quarter at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio, on Jan. 2, 2023. (Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

“We had significant concern about him after the injury and after the event that happened on the field, but he is making substantial progress,” Pritts said. “As of this morning, he is beginning to awaken, and it appears that his neurological condition and function is intact.”

Pritts added: “It’s not only that the lights are on. We know that he’s home, and it appears that all the cylinders are firing within his brain, which is greatly gratifying for all of us, for the nurses and the respiratory therapists and the care team that’s been at his side, for his family and for everybody else beyond.”

Best-Case Scenario?

Also Thursday, Pritts said they’ve been able to discuss with Hamlin what happened on Monday night. In a pivotal game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Hamlin tackled Bengals receiver Tee Higgins before getting back up and adjusted his helmet before dropping to the field, triggering an on-field medical response that lasted about 15 minutes and involved CPR.

“He’s not quite at the point where we can have a conversation because, again, he still has a breathing tube in and is able to communicate [with a yes or no] by shaking his head, nodding his head or with brief notes,” the doctor said. “[The player] expressed surprise that he had been not with the world for two days, and we talked to him about all the support that has been given from Cincinnati, Buffalo, and really across the country for him and his family during this time.”

“It’s been a long and difficult road the last three days,” Knight said. “He has been very sick and has made a fairly remarkable recovery and improvement to the point that, as [Pritts] noted, [Hamlin] is now demonstrating that sign of good neurologic recovery, as well as overall clinical improvement as has been previously reported related to not just his vital signs, but his other individual organ recovery.”

Knight also laid out the best-case scenario. Doctors, he said, want to get Hamlin’s condition “back to who he was before this all happened” before he collapsed on Monday night.

The NFL earlier this week said the game was postponed and did not say when it would resume, or if it would resume. The regular season ends on Sunday, and the playoffs officially start on Jan. 14.

Both the Bills and Bengals, along with the Kansas City Chiefs, are vying for top playoff spots in the AFC. The Bills are slated to host the New England Patriots, while the Bengals will host the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.

Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter with 15 years experience who started as a local New York City reporter. Having joined The Epoch Times' news team in 2009, Jack was born and raised near Modesto in California's Central Valley. Follow him on X: https://twitter.com/jackphillips5
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