Former NHL Star Craig Cunningham Faces Off Against Sudden Cardiac Arrest {Interview}

December is a busy time of year filled with holidays, family gatherings, football games…and ice hockey season! With the National Hockey League (NHL) in the heart of its season, some diehard fans, and hockey players alike, are laser focused on game day. But is heart health on the upcoming winter schedule?

Former professional ice hockey player Craig Cunningham, age 27, knows the true meaning of putting his heart and soul into the game. Just as he was starting his career with the NHL, his dream was derailed after collapsing on the ice. Cunningham had suffered from a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), an abrupt and unexpected heart malfunction.

Now back in the game as a scout for his former team, Cunningham is also working to raise awareness about SCA to help athletes, fans, and the public learn what they can do to come out ahead of a potentially deadly heart condition.

Join me in a recent interview with Craig Cunningham and his physician Dr. Mathew Hutchinson, cardiac electrophysiologist with the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center, as they provide information about SCA prevention and the life-saving medical therapies available for those at risk of SCA.

Check out the entire interview here:

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Craig Cunningham

Craig Cunningham, 27, is a Canadian-native and former professional ice hockey player. He played with the Boston Bruins and Arizona Coyotes in the National Hockey League (NHL).

On November 19, 2016, Cunningham suffered from sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) and collapsed on the ice before the start of a game. Lucky to be alive, Cunningham is now raising awareness about SCA to help athletes, fans and the public learn what they can do to come out ahead of a potentially deadly heart condition. He is also back in the game as a scout for his former team.

Dr. Mathew Hutchinson Biography

Dr. Mathew Hutchinson, board certified in cardiovascular disease and clinical cardiac electrophysiology, serves as director of the Cardiac Electrophysiology Program and Professor of Medicine at the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center. He specializes in the treatment of complex heart rhythm disorders, such as atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia.

Dr. Hutchinson came to the University of Arizona Health Sciences from the University of Pennsylvania where he was an associate professor of medicine at the Perelman School of Medicine. He completed his medical degree at St. Louis University School of Medicine and his medical residency at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School in Boston. His cardiology and electrophysiology fellowships were completed at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Hutchinson cares for patients with complex arrhythmia disorders, as well as adult congenital heart disease and arrhythmias. His clinical research activities are centered on developing new techniques to improve procedural outcomes in patients with atrial and ventricular arrhythmias. He is internationally renowned for his work in the use of imaging to characterize arrhythmia substrate in patients with structural heart disease. He has authored or co-authored nearly 100 research publications and serves as a reviewer or editorial board member on numerous publications, including The New England Journal of Medicine, Circulation, American Journal of Cardiology, Heart Rhythm, and the Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology.

[i]The American Heart Association. CPR & First Aid, Emergency Cardiovascular Care. Retrieved on June 6, 2016, from



Interview courtesy: Boston Scientific

Cynthia Tait

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