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Stories from patients, family, friends and Mayo Clinic staff

Cardiology & Cardiac Surgery

May 4, 2020

Rising Above Two Challenging Health Conditions

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

For years, Joey Del Toro has lived with medical conditions that have affected his abilities and appearance. But Joey hasn’t let his health concerns define him. Instead, he’s focused his energy on moving beyond them and excelling at the sports he loves.

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Tags: Alopecia areata, Cardiovascular Medicine, Dermatology, Dr. Bryan Cannon, Dr. Megha Tollefson, Mayo Clinic Children's Center, Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome


April 6, 2020

Embracing His Heart’s Passion, Despite Congenital Heart Defect

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Woody Hust, an athlete and outdoorsman, is living his dream in the Rocky Mountains. It’s a picture-perfect existence made even more special because he’s achieved his goals despite having a congenital heart defect. Thanks to the lifelong, personalized care Woody’s received from his Mayo Clinic cardiologist, the sky continues to be the limit for him.

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Tags: Center for Congenital Heart Disease, Congenital heart defects, Dr. Allison Cabalka, Dr. Joseph Dearani, Mayo Clinic Children's Center, Pediatric Cardiology


March 23, 2020

Impromptu Evaluation Uncovers Life-Threatening Heart Disease

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Greg VanBellinger knew from family history that he was at risk for heart disease, but as a fitness enthusiast who stayed on top of his medical appointments, he believed his heart was in good shape. An offhand decision to participate in a fitness evaluation at Mayo Clinic, however, revealed that Greg’s heart was not as […]

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Tags: Dr. Gurpreet Sandhu, Dr. Robert Frye, Dr. Warren Thompson, Executive Health Program


February 3, 2020

Cardiac Surgery Frees Amber Taff to Live Her Life

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

When surgery to ease the swelling and irritation that had developed around Amber Taff’s heart failed to improve her cardiac function, the 34-year-old decided to take her health into her own hands by going to Mayo Clinic.

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Tags: Dr. Christopher Appleton, Dr. Hartzell Schaff, Dr. Rick Nishimura, Pericarditis


December 18, 2019

Heart Surgery Keeps Trip Hedrick Swimming Strong

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

After a 20-year history of heart disease that’s included a heart attack and stent placements to clear blocked arteries, coronary bypass surgery at Mayo Clinic has helped Trip Hedrick continue pursuing his competitive swimming goals.

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Tags: Dr. John Stulak, Dr. Panithaya Chareonthaitawee, Dr. Roger Shepherd, Heart Disease


December 13, 2019

Finding Meaning and Renewal Through Cardiac Care

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Gary Tompkins’ heart is damaged from a dangerous cardiac condition. But that hasn’t stopped it from feeling joy, love and gratitude for a second chance at life, and for the men and women at Mayo Clinic whose commitment, compassion and friendship has helped him heal.

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Tags: Cardiac ablation, Dr. Christopher DeSimone, Dr. Suraj Kapa, Ventricular tachycardia


December 9, 2019

Emergency Air Ambulance Transfer and Expert Critical Care Avert Tragedy

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Tabetha and Matt Cameron live a quiet life. Partners since their teens, the Camerons spend their days enjoying familiar activities close to their northern Minnesota home. The couple cherishes their tranquil existence, especially since Tabetha underwent a harrowing medical trauma that nearly took her life.

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Tags: Critical Care, Dr. Jonathan Fox, Dr. M. Sertac Cicek, Kelly Sahs, Matthew Schuldes, Mayo Clinic Ambulance Service, Mayo Clinic Care Network, Meghan Lamp


November 15, 2019

Motorcycle Dreaming After Two Heart Transplants

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

When Dale Leighton underwent a heart transplant at Mayo Clinic, the motorcycling enthusiast believed his days of poor health were behind him. But the new heart failed to work. For Dale, who’s dealt with life-threatening heart disease for years, that meant a second heart transplant and a second journey through recovery.

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Tags: Dr. Richard Daly, Heart transplant, ventricular assist device


October 16, 2019

Surviving Aortic Dissection and Navigating Its Aftermath

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Surviving an aortic dissection is a tale not all patients live to tell. For Eric Salter, living through the traumatic experience was nothing short of miraculous. What’s been even more remarkable to the 45-year-old, though, is the life-changing care he’s received from his Mayo Clinic cardiologists who are committed to helping him live a long […]

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Tags: Aortic Aneurysm, Aortic Dissection, Dr. Alberto Pochettino, Dr. Sabrina Phillips


August 28, 2019

Kindhearted Kid Perseveres Through Multiple Heart Surgeries

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Although 3-year-old Matthew Makela and his family have already been forced to deal with a host of serious medical concerns during the young boy’s life, they navigate it all with grace and gratitude.

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Tags: Congenital heart defects, Dr. Karen Myhre, Mayo Clinic Children's Center, Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire, Tetralogy of Fallot


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