Sharing Mayo Clinic

Stories from patients, family, friends and Mayo Clinic staff

Cardiology & Cardiac Surgery

December 9, 2021

Robert Kass finds voice again after long COVID-19 battle, tracheal resection

By Cynthia Weiss Cynthia Weiss (@cindyweiss)

Robert Kass is a self-proclaimed adrenaline junkie. The 69-year-old is an avid rock climber, SCUBA diver and four-decade veteran softball player who once spent weeks sailing across the Pacific Ocean in a two-man vessel. Kass invested in his health through diet and exercise, and says he never had a serious illness in his life. Then, […]

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Tags: cardiothoracic surgery, COVID-19, Dr. Ian Makey, Robert Kass, tracheal resection


October 5, 2021

Detecting danger: Dan O’Bryan

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

Dan O’Bryan didn’t think his dizziness and lightheadedness were anything to worry about. Nearly 100 miles away, the team at Mayo Clinic that was remotely monitoring Dan’s heart could see the truth. Looking back, Dan O’Bryan now can see the connection between his dizzy spells and episodes of lightheadedness during spring 2021, and the slow heart […]

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Tags: Atrial Fibrillation, Dan O'Bryan, Dr. Diana Trifa, Dr. Omar Yasin, Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire, Mayo Clinic Laboratories


September 9, 2021

In my own words: Heart health for myself and my family

By Cynthia Weiss Cynthia Weiss (@cindyweiss)

Sandra Driggers is a nurse at Mayo Clinic in Florida who works in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine. This is her heart health story. I struggled with my weight for most of my life. I never really gave a lot of thought to being healthy (or unhealthy), or about how my weight and lifestyle played […]

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Tags: Cardiology, Dr. Carolyn Landolfo, heart attack, Heart Disease, heart health, Sandra Driggers, Sandy Driggers, women's heart health


August 19, 2021

Getting to the heart of the matter

By Cynthia Weiss Cynthia Weiss (@cindyweiss)

Ten years ago, Elizabeth Scovil, a 46-year-old wife and mother of four from Forest City, Florida, collapsed at the gym. Luckily some local paramedics were there and came to her rescue. But then it happened again. “I am an athlete. I was always working out,” says Elizabeth. She began experiencing episodes of dizziness, and her […]

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Tags: Cardiology, Dr. Carolyn Landolfo, Dr. Venkatachalam, Elizabeth Scovil, Heart Disease, MayoClinicFL, Patient Story, Ventricular tachycardia, Women's Heart Clinic


February 17, 2021

Complex heart surgery gives 6-year-old a second chance at childhood

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

Amy and Josh Porter were looking for the best pediatric heart surgery program to give their son the best chance at a regular childhood. Then they learned that two of them were working together in a new collaboration. When Mitchell Porter was born, he was diagnosed with heart defects that typi­cally require multiple surgeries over […]

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Tags: cardiovascular surgery, Dr. Joseph Dearani, Mayo Clinic Children's Center


January 14, 2021

84-year-old patient reaches milestone on a left ventricular assist device

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

Gayle Wilkerson has lived for 10 years with a left ventricular assist device, a mechanical pump that helps a damaged heart pump blood. The milestone is one not many patients reach. Gayle Wilkerson doesn’t accept hero status. Her care team at Mayo Clinic disagrees. At age 84, Gayle, holds the honor of living on a left ventricular […]

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Tags: congestive heart failure, Dr. Robert Scott, Left Ventricular Assist Device


December 29, 2020

Transplant patient says thanks ‘with all my old heart and new one’

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

Ernie Hernandez was battling congestive heart failure when he learned his liver was failing, too. On Oct. 26, he found answers to both issues with the first combined heart and liver transplant in Arizona. Ernie Hernandez was used to the hot Arizona sun. He was born and raised in Phoenix and worked as a contractor […]

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Tags: congestive heart failure


December 24, 2020

10 years, 2 brothers, 2 transplants: the Wilson brothers’ story

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

The Wilson brothers’ connection goes deeper than the average siblings. They both were in serious need of a heart transplant. The brothers now have new hearts, a new perspective on life, and a new purpose. On the surface, John and Mark Wilson are model brothers. Growing up, the two would playfully pick on each other […]

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Tags: Churg-Strauss syndrome, Heart tranplant, Left Ventricular Assist Device


December 15, 2020

Joelle’s journey to a new heart

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

Cardiomyopathy is a medical term for a number of genetic and nongenetic diseases involving the heart muscle that adversely affect the heart’s mechanical pumping function and its electrical system. It can occur in people of all ages, races or genders, and it is a frequent cause of sudden cardiac arrest and sudden cardiac death. For […]

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Tags: cardiomyopathy, Dr. Michael Ackerman


December 15, 2020

Israeli patient tells his own “life-changing” story of heart surgery during COVID-19 pandemic

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic (@SharingMayoClinic)

When Yiftah Geva was diagnosed with a heart condition several years ago, he never expected his journey to treatment would take him 6,000 miles away from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. It was almost six years ago when Yiftah Geva began taking medication to stabilize his blood pressure. Doctors wanted to investigate the cause of […]

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Tags: Dr. Hartzell Schaff, Dr. Steve Ommen, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy


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