Toms rushed to hospital with rapid heartbeat

FARMINGTON, Pa. -- David Toms was in good condition after developing a rapid pulse during the 84 Lumber Classic on Thursday and being rushed by helicopter to a Pittsburgh hospital.

Toms was even par through nine holes -- he started on No. 10 -- before being taken off the course on a stretcher, according to PGA Tour officials. He was taken first to Uniontown Hospital and then was flown to Pittsburgh's UPMC-Presbyterian University Hospital.

Toms was listed in good condition at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, administrator on duty Dolores Stairs told The Associated Press. Earlier in the evening, the hospital gave Toms' condition as critical.

"I have an issue with my heart, but it won't be a life-threatening situation," Toms said in a statement released by the PGA Tour on Thursday night. "I am staying overnight in the
hospital to get some further evaluation and tests done. The doctors will then give me some options on how to treat this issue.

"I appreciate all the people that helped me today, as well as the concern shown by everyone associated with the tournament," he said.

Adam Young, the director of the David Toms Foundation, said Toms had spoken with his family several times during the evening and was alert, and Toms later spoke with a PGA Tour official.

Toms' caddie, Scott Gneiser, told The Associated Press that Toms was airlifted to Pittsburgh because "his heart rate went way up."

There was no immediate word on what Toms' specific problem was.

"He was clutching his chest and said he couldn't breathe," said tournament co-leader Shaun Micheel, who was paired with Toms. "It shook me up. He went down to his knee, got up and walked a few steps and then went back to his knee. When an ambulance backs up to the first tee, it tells you it's a little more serious."

The 38-year-old Toms, an 11-time Tour winner, was playing in the $4.4 million 84 Lumber tournament as a tuneup for next week's Presidents Cup in Virginia. The 2001 PGA Championship winner also won the Accenture Match Play Classic earlier this year and is fourth on the 2005 money list with earnings of $3,656,213.

This is the second time this week that one of golf's best-known players was rushed to a hospital with a rapid pulse. Meg Mallon was taken to an Indianapolis hospital on Sunday after her heart began beating as many as 290 times a minute shortly after the closing ceremony at the Solheim Cup in Carmel, Ind.