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When Sarah (Steel) Anderson went into cardiac arrest at 12 years old, her parents feared she might never recover. Sarah was a healthy young girl who had just came home from cheerleading camp. She never showed any symptoms of heart problems. But doctors at Cincinnati Children's have learned much since Sarah became the first child in Cincinnati to receive a defibrillator in 1994. Since then, doctors discovered hypertrophic cardiomyopathy runs in her family. It is a thickening of the heart muscle that can lead to heart-stopping electrical malfunctions. Specialists discovered her son Noah, who's almost 2, also has it, while her older son does not. Further testing traced the gene back to Sarah's father, Jeff. Doctors think Jeff inherited the gene from his mother, who died 17 years ago after years of heart problems. Sarah, her son and her father are all patients at Cincinnati Children's, where specialists are researching generations of heart patients.
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