Archive | May, 2013

Heart attack number two…

30 May

I guess it had to happen. After twelve years a blockage developed in the vein they put in to bypass the original blockage.  Veins don’t hold up as well as arteries. So, while walking at the beach at Del Mar on Friday, May 17th, I had that familiar feeling that I had in January of 2001. I got to the main 17th Street life guard station and asked for some nitro glycerine.  Within a few minutes the medics arrived, did a test and said I was having a heart attack.  A few minutes later and I was on the way to La Jolla Memorial Hospital. Then within another short time Dr. Harrington was at work to find the problem. He found it and inserted a stent to open the blockage.  While looking around he found another artery that needed attention, so on Monday the 20th, he put two more stents into the artery that needed some help. Then Tuesday evening I left for home.

lifeguard station

The Del Mar Lifeguard Headquarters at 17th Street and the beach.

This is where I went for help – they were fast and efficient. I just happened to be at the right place at the right time — the story of my life.  For some reason, and I have no idea why, God has blessed my life above and beyond what would be considered “normal.”  I don’t know what will happen in the future, but up until now, at age 73, I have been on the receiving end of more blessings than most people.  I see people around me with all kinds of problems and tragedies to deal with and I repeat the familiar phrase to myself… “There but for the grace of God go I.”

When I look back over the years, I have great memories – being raised in the Palisades in the 50s was storybook — an ideal environment. Attended four years of college — joined the Army at 21 — traveled all over Europe while in the Army;  met Sylvia in Germany when we were both 23. We’ve enjoyed 50 years together, so far. I don’t want to bore you with details, but I’m one extremely blessed guy. Of course, I’ve faced many problems over the years, but nothing like I see around me. What did I do to deserve such a charmed life?  I don’t know — it’s a mystery.

John C. Harrington, MD - Interventional Cardiologist at La Jolla Memorial Hospital.

John C. Harrington, MD – Interventional Cardiologist at La Jolla Memorial Hospital.

Here’s a photo of my new hero. Not only did he fix me up with the stents in the right places, he went into great detail about the various aspects of what he did and what I can expect in the future. The doctor I had in 2001 didn’t spend any time with me.  I’m not a drug guy — I don’t like to take pills, but Dr. Harrington convinced me to take six pills a day to assist the arteries and the heart as it ages.  He said if I take the meds, I won’t have another heart attack.  That’s music to my ears, so now I’m a convert and I’m a happy pill-taker.

I’ll sign off for now and I’ll report in sometime next month with an update. He said it would take four to six weeks for the heart to get past the trauma of the attack. So, I’ll gradually get back to exercise and continue on with the good eating habits.

All for now