Robert Blodgett is clear: He was tricked into staying alive. If he’d had his way, he’d be dead from a heart attack. It likely would have been massive as three of his coronary arteries were 99 percent blocked and two others weren’t much better.
After 44 years of marriage and 44 years as a nurse, Ann Dobkowski thought she knew what would ease husband Dennis’s anxiety when he needed aortic heart valve replacement surgery at age 67. She didn’t.
For months I had been experiencing occasional discomfort in my chest when eating. I attributed it to eating too quickly when I was hungry. My husband thought I might have a hernia. It didn’t occur to me to mention it to my doctor, even though I saw one regularly.
Cat Davis Ahmed knew cholesterol was a family problem, but didn’t take it seriously until it affected her daughter.
When Jang Jaswal immigrated to this country from India in 1985, he assimilated one part of American culture quite enthusiastically: “When I came here, I got hooked on fast-food fried chicken,” he said. “Every lunchtime, I would buy a bucket and eat it.”
New life experiences described as ‘unremarkable’ merit high approval. A doctor’s appointment that concludes with ‘unremarkable’ in your medical chart is one. A seamless, multi-stop transatlantic flight is another.
Papa Joe Aviance eats healthy, walks and hopes to run a marathon one day. You’d never guess that just seven years ago he hated exercise and was more than twice the size he is today.
My heart story is similar to a lot of women who find out they have cardiovascular issues while pregnant. Luckily for me, I found out before it was too late.
Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is a narrowing of the peripheral arteries to the legs, stomach, arms and head — most commonly in the arteries of the legs. Survivor Elizabeth Beard shares the wisdom of her experience with PAD.
Ellie Brady was the picture of health, a wife and mother training for a half marathon. On a nine-mile training run she got out of breath. As the week progressed so did her symptoms — back pain, chest pain, uncontrollable chills — until she could no longer ignore them.
When Kimberly Ketter was diagnosed with heart failure, her first thought was for her identical twin, Shaun Rivers, to be tested. Her diagnosis was the same, so the twins took up recovery together. Today, they are advocates for heart health in their community.
“I had no idea what cholesterol was or what impact having high cholesterol could have on me,” she recalled. It wasn’t long before she found out. Within two years she was diagnosed with heart disease and had open-heart surgery for a double bypass.