“I don’t think there’s a better hospital in the world” – Heart Attack Survivor Recounts Princeton Experience

Feb 10, 2023

It didn’t seem like Trent Harbison was going to make it.

His journey began in his own driveway as he headed out to his truck for a commute to work.

“I never had any pain,” Harbison said. “I got clammy and sick at my stomach, so I was just going to go to work.”

But something intervened, and that something ended up saving Harbison’s life. “A little voice came in my head, strongest I’ve ever heard it, that said get to the emergency room.”

According to Harbison, the voice also told him not to drive. Am ambulance arrived 10 minutes later to take Harbison to Cullman Regional Medical Center.

Harbison had suffered a massive heart attack, brought on by heavy blockage in his “widow maker” artery.

Thanks to a strong connection and partnership between Cullman Regional and Princeton Baptist Medical Center, it was determined that Harbison needed to be transported to Princeton.

Unfortunately, the weather made it harder to make that happen. A helicopter was dispatched to retrieve Harbison, but a storm grounded the flight.

Luckily, an ambulance was able to brave the elements, arrive at Cullman and safely transport Harbison to Princeton where he was placed in the care of cardiologist Dr. Rayan Saab.

According to Harbison, Dr. Saab told him his situation was dire, to which Harbison responded, “do everything you can.”

And that’s exactly what Dr. Saab did.

Harbison was intubated and eventually fell into a coma that lasted two weeks.

But thanks to the work of Dr. Saab and his staff, Harbison went from a heart function of 10 percent up to 85 at his most recent check-up in late December 2022.

Following his experience, Harbison was extremely grateful to every medical professional that helped save his life, from the beginning at Cullman all the way through the transfer to Princeton.

“It was by luck and by God that (Cullman) sent me to Princeton,” Harbison said. “Everybody here is so nice and kind. It’s just a wonderful crew. I don’t think there’s a better hospital in the world. I really don’t.”

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