The Examiner

Mt. Kisco Little Leaguer Survives Scare, on Road to Recovery

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Mikey Corsi

It’s a play that happens innumerable times during a baseball season. For Mikey Corsi, it was almost his last.

Corsi, a second baseman for the Mount Kisco 10U travel team this summer, had walked in the top of the first inning in a June 30 game at Lewisboro Town Park. When the next batter worked the count to 3-2, his coach told him to steal. On the next pitch he took off for second and slid safely into the base.

“When I slid I guess I just passed out,” said the Mount Kisco Elementary School fifth-grader.

Corsi, who was diagnosed a few years ago with Long QT Syndrome, a rare inborn condition that can affect the rhythm of the heartbeat, was no longer breathing and his heart had stopped. His legs were shaking. The coaches raced onto the field and signaled for his father, Mike, who was in the bleachers with his two daughters and nieces, to come down. He stood up and cried out for help.

“People were saying he broke his leg but me and my sister knew it was more than that and the first thing that went through my mind was that he wasn’t going to make it,” said Mikey’s 12-year-old sister Rachel.

It was then that Dr. Carmine Sorbera ran onto the field, was told of Corsi’s condition and began chest compressions that restarted Corsi’s heart. For the past 16 years, Sorbera, the cousin of one of the team’s coaches, had been director of cardiac electrophysiology at Westchester Medical Center/New York Medical College in Valhalla and specializes in Long QT Syndrome. That day had been Sorbera’s last at the medical center before he was scheduled to join the faculty of Columbia-Presbyterian, so he and his wife decided to spend the evening at the game.

Corsi’s mother, Lisa, who was at home at the time, said if Sorbera hadn’t been in attendance or if there hadn’t been someone who knew precisely what to do to help a Long QT Syndrome victim, the episode could have been fatal.

“He just happened to come to an eight o’clock game in Lewisboro,” Lisa Corsi said of Sorbera. “It’s just amazing. We’re so lucky.”

After regaining consciousness, Corsi spit up, was given oxygen and rushed by ambulance to Northern Westchester Hospital.

“I remember waking up (on the field) and all these people were around me, the coaches, my dad,” he recalled.

Although he was saved, Corsi wasn’t out of the woods. At Northern Westchester, doctors assessed his situation before deciding to transfer him to Columbia-Presbyterian at about 4 a.m. the next morning.

Lisa Corsi said doctors informed the family that they needed to implant a defibrillator in Mikey’s chest to prevent a similar episode from occurring. With the July 4 weekend about to start, the surgery was pushed to Tuesday, July 5, which meant Mikey was going to remain at the hospital over the long holiday weekend.

“Here we were at Columbia-Presbyterian, he was wired up the whole weekend on IV and he felt fine,” Lisa Corsi said.

It had been three summers almost to the day that Mikey had first passed out and was diagnosed a short time later with Long QT Syndrome. He was at the Mount Kisco pool with his day camp and had come out of the water, his mother said. He fainted, but unlike a few weeks ago, his heart didn’t stop and he hadn’t stopped breathing.

The pediatric cardiologist who diagnosed Mikey following the first episode prescribed a beta blocker and told the family he could resume regular activities, including playing ball. He had had no symptoms since then. When doctors at the hospital heard Mikey had already been on medication, the implantable defibrillator was the only route to go.

Lisa Corsi said her son was in good spirits throughout most of July 4 weekend until the night before the surgery.

“I remember Monday night we just had bouts of emotion. He was concerned it was going to hurt,” she said. “His biggest fear was that it was going to hurt.”

The surgery was supposed to take about two hours but lasted more than five. Mikey was in discomfort following the surgery so he was given morphine and couldn’t go home until July 7.

Since Long QT Syndrome is hereditary, doctors recommended that everyone in the family be tested. As it turned out, Lisa Corsi also has the condition but has never experienced a problem.

“I never had an incident and I’ve done triathlons,” she said. “My brother has done iron man. I can’t do that but I’ve never had a problem. Nothing. They say some people can live with it and never know they have it.”

The doctors’ prognosis is excellent for Mikey. He will need to go for checkups at six-month intervals and have the defibrillator battery replaced every five to seven years. He can engage in a full set of activities but cannot play contact sports for fear that impact can damage the defibrillator. He also can’t ride roller coasters. About four weeks after surgery he can resume swimming and even play baseball in six weeks. The only restriction is that he can’t play catcher. While he would have liked to have tried other team sports, Mikey, a Yankee fan, was pleased he can return to the field.

“I’m happy about that. I can still play baseball,” he said.
       Since coming home he attends all of his team’s games, sits on the bench in his jersey, cheering his friends on. His teammates have also visited him on a regular basis.

Since then, the Mount Kisco Little League has been the recipient of a defibrillator from the Mets and SNY, the team’s cable network.

During Mikey’s surgery, Lisa Corsi sent off an e-mail to Sorbera thanking the doctor for his lifesaving efforts.

“I can’t tell you how grateful we are to you for responding and taking care of our little boy, there really are not enough words.  The ER Cardiologist at Northern Westchester said it was “Divine Intervention” and so I believe that makes you the “Divine” part of our family.”








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