Ann Blackford

UK Nursing Student's First Experience With Trauma Was Life-Saving for Her Father

Published: Sep 19, 2013

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 19, 2013) − Anna Kraemer, a 20-year-old second semester nursing student at the University of Kentucky College of Nursing, thought briefly about reviewing the steps to CPR on her smart phone, but there was no time as she dragged the unconscious body out of the car onto the pavement outside the UK Emergency Department (ED) and began CPR.


She never expected her first experience with trauma to happen so soon outside the controlled environment of the classroom. Time stood still even though help came quickly. She watched the chest rise and fall as members of UK's ED arrived to take over and wheel her father inside.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013, started out as an ordinary day. Anna, who says her father, Philipp Kraemer, the Chellgren Chair for Undergraduate Excellence at UK, never shows concern for himself.  However, on this day he kept coming into the house from his woodworking shed complaining of indigestion and saying his arms felt 'funny.'  He had chest pains but thought it was because he had worked out too hard with weights the day before. Her dad seemed very anxious and he asked Anna to take his vitals. By now, Anna started to sense the urgency and looked up his symptoms on the internet. The information kept pointing to one thing: heart attack.


The Kraemers live close to UK Chandler Hospital, so Anna decided to drive her dad to the ED. However, as she was backing out of the driveway, he started gasping for air.  Too panicked to drive at this point, Anna saw her neighbor John Reynolds, who immediately jumped into the driver's seat as they raced to the ED.


The 911 operator called ahead and alerted them a hear attack victim was on the way. The ED team immediately went into action by setting up an exam bay and paging Cardiology to be on stand-by. 


Anna's mother, Beth Kraemer, who is director of Digital Library Services at UK, arrived at the hospital within minutes after a call from Anna. 


Beth Kraemer said that despite the flurry of activity in the emergency department, everything seemed well orchestrated and the nurses and doctors provided extraordinary care.


"Every person in the ED has an integral role - nurses, physicians, paramedics, techs, and clerks," Patricia Howard, operations manager of Emergency Services at UK Chandler Hospital said.  "We want every patient to have a good outcome"


Sixty-two year-old Philipp Kraemer could best be described as the picture of health. He rides a bike to his office on UK's campus every day, is physically active, and generally healthy. Anna said she didn't think something like this could happen to someone like her dad.


However, Philipp Kraemer said that although he has no memory of the day of his heart attack or immediately after, in retrospect, he can remember feeling drained after exercising and attributed it to the fact that he is no longer in his 20s.


Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the leading cause of death in the U.S. and although mortality rates have declined over the past four decades, it remains responsible for about one-third of all deaths in individuals over age 35.


"Heart disease can happen to anybody," said Dr. Melina Aguinaga-Meza, assistant professor of Medicine, cardiologist and intensivist at UK's Gill Heart Institute, who led the cardiology team that took care of Kraemer during his hospital stay and now his primary cardiologist.  


Aguinaga-Meza says he had a 90 percent blockage in the main artery which provides blood to the heart. A stent was placed to clear the blockage but there was still some concern over what damage to the brain may have occurred because of the amount of time it took at get his heart beating again.


She also explains that the longer a heart is stopped, the greater the chance for brain death. Studies show that if you cool the brain down after a trauma, neurons are cooled and don't work as much which means less cell death. Therapeutic Hypothermia, a relatively new treatment that has been used at UK’s Gill Heart Institute for the past few years, has shown great success in improving neurologic outcome and reduced mortality. 


Philipp Kraemer's body was cooled to a targeted temperature of 32 - 34 Celsius degrees and gradually warmed up 24 hours later.


"Anna was a rock during this whole experience," Beth Kraemer said. "She talked with Phil while he was unconscious, joking with him and patting his arm. Even the nurses and technicians talked with him: 'I need to draw blood now. You're going to feel a stick,' which was in some ways comforting to me."


Anna's older sister, Emily, a 22-year-old May 2013 graduate of the UK College of Nursing, was in Italy at the time of her father's heart attack but made it home a few days later. Coincidentally, Emily recently started her first nursing job in the UK ED as a trauma nurse.


"He has had a remarkable recovery," Aguinaga-Meza said.  "He will be on medications for the rest of his life -- aspirin, beta blockers, statins, and ace inhibitors -- but the fact that he recovered so quickly makes his prognosis good.”


Philipp Kraemer said he has a new perspective of UK HealthCare.


"It's always been a big operation with no personal connection to me," he said. "The care I received and the nurses were remarkable. It's a real testament to what modern medicine, technology, and resources can do."


"I'm lucky I had my daughter there who handled this," Philipp Kraemer said. "I'm very proud of both my daughters for going into the nursing profession."


Emily Kraemer said her dad's heart attack has given her new insight into trauma nursing and will help her as she cares for patients and families dealing with trauma.


The Kraemers are very grateful for the compassionate care they received at UK for what they describe as a miraculous recovery by Philip. "This is a story of survival," Beth Kraemer said. "We all feel very lucky." 


Media Contact: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or



Internship Info Session
LNFS Presents: Dallas Buyers Club
College of Law Welcomes Trevor Potter
Dancing at Lughnasa
LNFS Presents: Notes on Marie Menken
LNFS Presents: Edge of Tomorrow
UK Jazz Ensemble/ UK Lab Band
Earth & Environmental Science Student Open House
"Nerd Night" Exhibit and Concert
"Anne Braden: Southern Patriot" Film Screening and Discussion
Dancing at Lughnasa
LNFS Presents: My Neighbor Totoro
LNFS Presents: (500) Days of Summer
Men's Soccer vs. Old Dominion
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Alabama
Dancing at Lughnasa
Kentucky Football vs. South Carolina
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Rock Climbing @ Red River Gorge
Cross Cultural Workshop 2014
Swing Dancing!
Dancing at Lughnasa
Cross Cultural Workshop 2014
UK Children's Hospital/Birthing Center Annual Perinatal Loss "Walk To Remember"
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Texas A&M
Dancing at Lughnasa
Murals of Baltimore
Resumes and Cover Letters
Dancing at Lughnasa
Murals of Baltimore
Networking and Job Search
UK Choristers
Rock Star Professionalism Series
Stillness in Motion: The Essence of Symmetry - presented by Dr. Carl Lee, Mathematics
Dancing at Lughnasa
Murals of Baltimore
LNFS Presents: Night of the Living Dead
UK Law Day
Dancing at Lughnasa
Murals of Baltimore
LNFS Presents: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Mark Berry, Guest Percussion Recital
National Depression Screening Day
LNFS Presents: Torch Song Trilogy
Dancing at Lughnasa
LNFS Presents: Shut Up and Play the Hits
LNFS Presents: Watchmen
KLJ Data Privacy Symposium
Family Weekend Check-in
Big Blue Pantry Food Drive #1
Kentucky Women's Soccer vs. South Carolina
Family Weekend: Derek Hughes
Dancing at Lughnasa
Kentucky Football vs. ULM
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
UK International Tent/ Tailgate Party
CT Surgery Symposium: Advances in the Surgical Management of Cardiothoracic Diseases:
Family Weekend Tent Party
Dancing at Lughnasa
DNT 101: A Taste of the Kentucky Doughnut Trail
Big Blue Pantry Food Drive #2
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Auburn
Sunday Lunch at Historic Spindletop Hall
Men's Soccer vs. Marshall
Job Club - Social Media and Your Career
Massage on the Go
LNFS Presents: The Last Samurai
UK Symphony Band Concert
Women's Forum Conference 2014
#TrendingTopics: Pornography vs. Morality
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: The Tree of Life
LNFS Presents: Guardians of the Galaxy
UK Wind Symphony
LNFS Presents: Princess Mononoke
LNFS Presents: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Kentucky Women's Soccer vs. Ole Miss
Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet
Paint the Town Blue
Free Kaplan Entrance Practice Exams
4th Annual Big Blue Soccer Tournament
Men's Soccer vs. New Mexico
Swing Dancing and Costumes?
Paint the Town Blue
UK Men's Chorus and acoUstiKats
Jazz Spectacular
UK Student Pajama Party
Kentucky Volleyball vs. LSU
Kentucky Women's Soccer vs. Florida
Paint the Town Blue
Midterm of 2014 Fall Semester
Returning to Work and Breastfeeding
Open Access Week Kickoff Event (Webcast)
Grad School 101
Royalty Showcase
Graduate and Professional School Prep Week: Preparing for Law School
Graduate and Professional School Prep Week: Grad School Panel: Surviving Your 1st Year
Film & Panel Discussion: Be Like Others
Graduate and Professional School Showcase
Your Publication, Your Choice: Choosing the Right Open Access Journal
Graduate and Professional School Prep Week
Graduate and Professional School Prep Week
Kitty Karnival
Study Tips for Medical School
LNFS Presents: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Thank-A-Donor Day
Campus Sustainability Day
Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Information Session
Getting Into Medical School
Writing a Winning Personal Statement
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: Marimbas From Hell
LNFS Presents: The Fault in Our Stars
Generation Open: Researchers' Roles in the Age of Openness
Homecoming Street Fair
LNFS Presents: Kiki's Delivery Service
LNFS Presents: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
"see blue." Day at Keeneland
Peanut Butter Drive
Pumpkin Carving Tournament
Kentucky Football vs. Mississippi State
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
UK Women's Choir and Paws and Listen
Bill Cooper Faculty Recital
UK Trumpet Ensemble
Undergraduate Research Information Session "How to Find A Mentor"
Kentucky Men's Basketball Blue/White Scrimmage
Job Club - How To Get A Job at UK: Updates on IES Applicant Tracking System
Common Reading Experience Author Lecture: Presenting Ishmael Beah
Screening of the documentary Teached
Internship Info Session
LNFS Presents: The Shining
Pinterest Party
Leadership Assessment
"see boo." Halloween Party
Society for the Promotion of Undergraduate Research (SPUR) Meeting
#UKEDTALKS: Design Thinking with Dr. John Nash
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Tennessee
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: Lucy
Film Viewing and Discussion of The Other Boleyn Girl
LNFS Presents: Papirosen
Kentucky Women's Soccer vs. Alabama
LNFS Presents: ParaNorman
LNFS Presents: Carrie
All Hallow's Eve Concert (UK Symphony Orchestra)
Work-Life Retirement Conference

Fri, 10/24/2014

Repeats every week until Sat Nov 29 2014 except Sat Sep 20 2014, Sat Oct 18 2014.
Sat, 10/25/2014

Sun, 10/26/2014

Reset Page