Sharing Mayo Clinic

Stories from patients, family, friends and Mayo Clinic staff

Items Tagged ‘heart failure’

February 15th, 2017

Local Politician Doesn’t Skip a Beat With Mechanical Heart Pump

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Heart failure threatened to derail Junior Boatright’s busy life, but a left ventricular assist device has helped him get back on track while he waits for a heart transplant.

While Walter "Junior" Boatright was running for a second term as Nassau county commissioner in northeast Florida in November 2012, he started to feel winded. At first, he chalked it up to getting older and just not having the same energy he used to, while campaigning 15 hours a day.

But after the campaign was over, and he had won the election, the Callahan, Florida, native says he was out of breath just walking out to the mailbox.

"It was like I had run down the road and back," Junior says. "I knew something wasn't right."

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Tags: Cardiac Rehabilitation, Dr Daniel Yip, Dr Jeffrey Hosenpud, Dr Kevin Landolfo, heart failure, Heart Failure Clinic, Left Ventricular Assist Device, lvad

October 21st, 2015

Here Comes (the Father of) the Bride — With a Little Help From Mayo

By Hoyt Finnamore HoytFinnamore

Andre Pearson traveled to his daughter's wedding with some help from Mayo Clinic.

Andre Pearson wanted nothing more than to be in Indio, California, last June to answer the question: "Who gives this woman to be married to this man?" But up until the night before, it looked like he was going to be resigned to watching his daughter, Alexandra Price, get married from half a country away. Heart and kidney failure had kept Andre in a hospital bed at Mayo Clinic's Rochester campus since March. But then his care team had an idea.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr David Joyce, Dr Lyle Joyce, ventricular assist device, Wedding, heart failure, kidney failure

November 5th, 2014

Not Ready to Slow Down

By Hoyt Finnamore HoytFinnamore

A second opinion at Mayo Clinic helped Harold Magy return to the active schedule he loves

Harold and Judy Magy enjoying a fall day in Minnesota.For years, Harold Magy was familiar with the inner workings of Mayo Clinic. As a mechanical engineer for more than two decades with a company that frequently worked with Mayo, he knew the ins and outs of many of the clinic’s complex mechanical systems in Rochester, Minnesota. But during that time, he was never a patient at Mayo, and he never thought he would be.

"I have had heart problems for a long time," says Harold. "I always took care of it with my local doctors. I didn't think about going anywhere else."

That changed in the summer of 2013. Harold's health had slowly deteriorated to a point that he had very little energy and spent most of his time at home. His wife, Judy, ultimately insisted he seek another opinion about the best treatment for his heart condition. Today, Harold is extremely grateful for his wife's persistence. Thanks to a revamped treatment plan developed by his physicians at Mayo Clinic, now at age 88, Harold has returned to working and teaching on a regular basis.

"Since I went to Mayo Clinic, I've gotten better and better," he says. "I feel mentally sharp, and I'm back to doing what I love." Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: heart failure, Cardiovascular Diseases, patient stories

March 5th, 2012

Incredible Journey: Surviving an Incurable Disease

By Susana Shephard susanashephard

Bobbie Sofia and her family“Couldn’t breathe, gasping for air,” is how Bobbie Sofia describes the first sign that something was wrong.

In 2007, Bobbie Sofia and her husband, Sam, traveled to San Antonio, Texas from their home of almost forty years in Lake Havasu City, Arizona to attend their daughter, Ashley's, graduation from Air Force Basic Training. While enjoying the sights on the River Walk, Bobbie suddenly began gasping for breath. She recovered after a short while, but in the back of her mind, she knew that it was time to see her doctor at Mayo Clinic Family Medicine -Thunderbird.

Her physician ordered a series of tests including a chest x-ray, echocardiogram, lab tests, and electrocardiogram. Bobbie had battled her weight for most of her life but otherwise had no serious medical problems such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes. Nothing could have prepared her for the diagnosis - heart failure. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Amyloidosis, Bobbie Sofia, Cardiac Amyloidosis, Craig Reeder, CyBorD, D. Eric Steidley, heart failure, Stem Cell Transplant

May 24th, 2010

Mayo Clinic Artificial Heart Patient on CBS Evening News

By Lee Aase, Director, Mayo Clinic Social Media Network LeeAase

Charles Okeke leaves Mayo Clinic after two years in the hospital

A Mayo Clinic patient achieved a medical milestone recently when he was the first U.S. patient to go home with a new kind of portable artificial heart. CBS Evening News covered the story, which began as follows:

For nearly two years, 43-year-old Charles Okeke has tried to live a normal life in the hospital tethered to a 400-lb. machine.

"It sort of overwhelms you to think, 'I'm stuck to a machine,'" he says.

Okeke was barely 30 when a blood clot destroyed his heart, reports CBS News medical correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton. He had a transplant and for 10 years life was good for this computer consultant and father of three.

But in 2008 his body rejected that heart and at that time another transplant was out of the question.

Okeke now has what is called a "total artificial heart." Both ventricles were removed along with four valves. Connector tubes were sewn in. It pumps blood just like a human heart.

Mr. Okeke is a patient at Mayo Clinic in Arizona. His surgeon, Dr. Francisco Arabia, was instrumental in enabling him to get approval to use the new device.

Watch the story here on the CBS site.

See a story about Mr. Okeke from last year here on Sharing Mayo Clinic.

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Tags: artificial heart, CBS News, charles okeke, Francisco Arabia, heart failure, heart transplant, Matthew Clark PhD

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