20 June 2014 ~ 0 Comentarios

The heart of a poet

by Karina Chavarria, Jackson Health System

(305fit) Moro, 67, an accomplished poet from Cuba and a Little Havana resident, was a heavy smoker, diabetic, and suffered from high cholesterol and elevated blood pressure. Then, last August, just 10 days after presenting her latest book Obra Poética Casi Completa or An Incomplete Book of Poetry, at a literary event, Moro suffered a massive heart attack.

“I had gone out that day, and I started feeling nauseous so I returned home,” she says. “Then I started vomiting. I was also feeling weak and disoriented, so I decided to call 911.”

Paramedics rushed her to Jackson Memorial Hospital. After arriving at the emergency room, Moro went into cardiac arrest 27 times. She went on to spend a month in a coma.

“It’s a true miracle that she’s alive,” says Cesar Mendoza, M.D., a medical director of cardiology for Jackson Medical Group. He noted that throughout his cardiovascular career he had never before resuscitated a patient as many times as he did Moro.

To treat Moro, Dr. Mendoza performed a minimally invasive procedure to implant a left ventricular assist device, or VAD, called Impella®. The device is one of the world’s smallest mechanical cardiovascular support systems. It’s so small that it can be inserted into the patient’s heart through a  small catheter. A tiny hole is made in the artery of the leg and the device is passed through until it reaches the heart.

“This device helps Lilliam’s heart pump oxygen-rich blood through her body,” Dr. Mendoza says.

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