Sharon Allen was a healthy mother of five when she suddenly collapsed. Every second mattered as she was flown to MedStar Heart & Vascular Institute at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. Despite the rare condition, our team of specialists diagnosed her from a distance, planning Sharon's surgery while she was still in the air. Following extensive surgery, Sharon was placed on ECMO, an advanced technology that gave her heart time to heal -- and allowed her to return to her loving family. Every day, our teams come together like clockwork, putting patients first, above all else.
Admiral Tim Heely
Listen to Dr. Jennifer Ellis, MedStar Heart Institute Cardiac Surgeon, describe the harrowing close call experienced by patient Pat Chisley, whose dramatic story is told in a series of current advertisements now being seen across the greater Washington, D.C. region.
TAVR: Noninvasive Breakthrough Is a Senior's Choice
For 86-year-old Marvin Ward of Springfield, Va., surgery to repair a faulty aortic valve was not an option, but his own choice. His cardiologist recommended the surgery when Marvin started experiencing extreme shortness of breath.
"I had a quadruple bypass in 1999," he recalls. "At my age, I didn't want to go through major surgery like that again." There seemed to be no alternative. Then Marvin's daughter searched the Internet and found the TAVR randomized clinical trial at MedStar Washington Hospital Center.
After being accepted for this noninvasive procedure, Marvin received a new aortic valve by endovascular implantation on May 3, 2010. "I went home three days later. I felt so good I went out and watered the garden." Now, more than a year later, Marvin is going strong and about to celebrate another birthday, number 88.
LVAD to Transplant: I'm Blessed
Larry Lundy had managed his congestive heart failure with medication since 2001. But in November 2009, flu became pneumonia, and he was admitted to MedStar Washington Hospital Center with atrial fibrillation.
"The next two weeks were a blur," remembers Larry. "I woke up in the ICU with an LVAD and a chance to live that I wouldn't have had otherwise." Staff members helped him prepare for life on the LVAD, and he went on the waiting list for a heart transplant. Once home, things went mostly back to normal.
Late in November 2010, he returned for his new heart. Two weeks later, he was home. On February 15, Larry returned to work at IBM, where he is an IT project manager. "I don't consider myself lucky. I'm blessed," says Larry, "to have this technology and these wonderful people available to help me."
Learn more about our LVAD and Advanced Heart Failure Program.
Code Heart Innovations Save Time and Lives
Tuesday morning, May 24. Hugh Bunyea has severe chest pains. An ambulance brings him to Calvert Memorial Hospital, where the ER physician stabilizes him. There are signs of an acute heart attack. The physician calls the interventional cardiologist on call at MedStar Washington Hospital Center's cath lab for a consult.
The clinical case is presented and the EKG is transmitted in real time via iPhone. A MedSTAR Transport helicopter rushes Hugh to the cath lab for emergent cardiac catheterization. The interventional team is ready when he arrives. In less than 90 minutes, a completely occluded coronary vessel is opened and stented.
"I couldn't have been in better hands, says Hugh, who returned home four days later. MedStar Heart Institute's innovative communications and integrated transport streamline care and assure the best course of action
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