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When the cry went up — sudden, urgent — that our eldest son, Dominic, had been pulled unconscious from the swimming pool in our garden at a party on a balmy July night last year, I ran from the house thinking the panic would be unwarranted.
Nothing, surely, that dear old Dad couldn't sort out. After all, as a consultant neurological and spinal surgeon I have spent much of my career dealing with medical emergencies.
Boy - CPR - Resuscitation
But it was immediately apparent to me as I desperately gave our treasured boy CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) that he was desperately ill.
Blessed in our lives, our luck ran out that night. Fifteen hours later — despite my determined attempts, the rapid arrival of the paramedics and the highly skilled doctors from two hospitals who worked on him throughout the next day — our beloved son died.
Experts - Dominic - Arrest - Heart - Condition
At the inquest all the medical experts agreed that Dominic had died following a cardiac arrest from a previously unsuspected heart condition. He had been exercising hard, swimming underwater, when he was suddenly struck.
Unconnected with the swimming, all the experts agreed that it could have occurred at any time or place.
Inquest - Drowning - Water - Besides - Question
The inquest had been able to discount drowning, as he had been pulled from the water so rapidly, and besides, the question is then why a fit, sober young man would drown in a warm, quiet pool?
The experts similarly rejected the idea that he had simply run out of oxygen. So-called 'shallow water blackout' is incredibly rare and occurs in very different circumstances.
Loss - Words - Scope - Scale
The loss for us is profound and life-changing. No words can describe the scope and scale of it.
Along with my wife and Dominic's two brothers, we each feel a part of us died with him that day.
Dominic - Boys - Cambridge - Graduate
Dominic was 24, the eldest of our three boys, a Cambridge graduate with a...
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