Amazing Stories - Bill R.

Amazing Stories Bill R.

"They gave me a new lease on life, and I am taking full advantage of it."

NAME: Bill R.
AGE:
67
HOMETOWN:
Massapequa
CONDITION:
Heart Patient

Bill R., 67, was considered a model patient. An ex-smoker, he dutifully took his prescribed medicines for high blood pressure and high cholesterol. During a routine visit to the South Nassau Primary Care Center at Bellmore, Carolyne McHyman, DO, performed a physical exam, ordered further diagnostic tests and recommended Bill see his cardiologist.

The follow-up tests found a serious and potentially lethal blockage in Bill’s heart, known as a “widow maker.” Most patients — like Bill — have no symptoms or pain. Bill’s cardiologist, Pilar Stevens-Haynes, MD, recommended a cardiac catheterization to check for additional blockages. Jason Freeman, MD, director of Interventional Cardiology at South Nassau, performed the catheterization in April and discovered his main arteries were significantly blocked.

Robin Varghese, MD, associate professor of the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and director of Mount Sinai’s Cardiovascular Critical Care, was at South Nassau on the day of Bill’s catheterization. Dr. Varghese is spending time at South Nassau each month as part of South Nassau’s pending affiliation with Mount Sinai Health System. He determined Bill needed open-heart surgery.

Bill was very anxious and nervous about having major heart surgery, but he had a great deal of confidence in Dr. Varghese and his team of doctors. “He was so reassuring and calming,” Bill says. “I left his office thinking, ‘This is going to be OK.’” Days later, Dr. Varghese and his team performed a three-hour operation at Mount Sinai to restore blood flow to Bill’s heart. Within four days, Bill was home and back at church in Massapequa the following Sunday.

Today, Bill participates in South Nassau’s Cardiac Rehabilitation program three days a week in Oceanside, right on Long Island. “The team of doctors at both South Nassau and Mount Sinai … they saved me,” Bill says. “They gave me a new lease on life, and I am taking full advantage of it.”

Learn More

Cardiac Services at South Nassau