WASHINGTON — Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin was released from the hospital Wednesday and will continue recovering at home from a life-threatening medical incident that shocked millions watching when he collapsed on the field during a game earlier this month.
Hamlin was admitted to the Buffalo General Medical Center's Gates Vascular Institute Monday after being discharged from a Cincinnati hospital where he had been for a week after he went into cardiac arrest.
Buffalo General did a series of tests to evaluate him before allowing the Bills player to go home, according to an update Wednesday.
"We have completed a series of tests and evaluations, and in consultation with the team physicians, we are confident that Damar can be safely discharged to continue his rehabilitation at home and with the Bills," said Dr. Jamie Nadler, a critical care physician at Buffalo General, in a statement.
The 24-year-old from the Pittsburgh area has made significant progress in his recovery since spending his first two days at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center under sedation and breathing through a ventilator.
He was awakened last Wednesday and was eventually able to grip people’s hands. By Friday, Hamlin was able to breathe on his own and even addressed the team by videoconference, telling the Bills, “Love you boys.”
Doctors said Hamlin has been walking since having a breathing tube removed on Friday, eating regular food and undergoing therapy. They said he was on a normal or even accelerated trajectory in his recovery from cardiac arrest, which is considered a life-threatening event, and that normal recovery can be measured from weeks to months.
“We continue to be ecstatic about his recovery,” Dr. Timothy Pritts, one of his doctors in Cincinnati, said when Hamlin returned to Buffalo.
Hamlin's heart stopped after making what appeared to be a routine tackle in the first quarter against the Bengals. The game was initially suspended before officially being canceled later in the week.