CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 29, 2008 |
As an American tourist visiting Hanoi in 1997, Marichia Simcik Arese extended a simple goodwill gesture to a group of struggling teenage students in Vietnam. The youths were working at a restaurant and using their down-time to fashion picture frames from empty aluminum cans. "They would sell the frames to pay for their education," she recalled. "I told them if they would make 50 and send them to me, I would try to sell them in the U.S. and send the money back to them."
July 12, 2008 |
Dr. Michael DeBakey, the world-famous cardiovascular surgeon who pioneered such now-common procedures as bypass surgery and invented a host of devices to help heart patients, died at a hospital in Houston, officials announced. He was 99. DeBakey died from natural causes, according to a written statement issued early today by spokesmen for Baylor College of Medicine and The Methodist Hospital. DeBakey underwent surgery in February 2006 for a damaged aorta -- a procedure he had developed.
June 23, 2008 |
Cynthia Burstein Waldman of Los Angeles got tired of feeling she knew more than her doctors did about her hereditary heart condition, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; tired of worrying that a provider might accidentally give her a contraindicated drug, like nitroglycerin, in an emergency; tired of hearing conflicting information from doctors who rarely saw a woman her age with the condition. "It's not a disease most people, even cardiologists, see in their practice," she says.
April 14, 2008 |
The last time Antisha Anderson was in this third-floor operating room at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, she was groggy from anesthesia and puzzled by the big, round lights shining down on her. "They looked like alien eyes," she said, laughing. Anderson, a four-time national youth heptathlon champion and aspiring Olympian, was in that surgical suite Nov. 28 to undergo a rare heart procedure. Returning recently for a visit she was greeted like a friend, not merely a statistical success.
March 20, 2008 |
Heart surgery patients who received transfusions of blood stored for more than two weeks were 64% more likely to die in the hospital than those who received fresher blood, a finding that adds to the growing concern about the safety of transfusion practices. Several small studies have already suggested a danger in using blood that is nearing its expiration date, but a report published today is by far the largest, with more than 6,000 patients enrolled. In response to the growing concern, some hospitals have modified their procedures for cardiac surgery -- one of the largest consumers of donor blood -- to minimize the need for transfusions.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 9, 2008 |
Three hospitals in Los Angeles County -- County-USC Medical Center, Citrus Valley Medical Center/Inter-Community Campus in Covina and Torrance Memorial Medical Center -- had the highest mortality rates in California for coronary bypass surgery in 2005, according to a statewide analysis scheduled to be released today.
August 3, 2007 |
Nevada Las Vegas basketball Coach Lon Kruger underwent open-heart surgery Thursday in which six bypasses were performed, the school said. Kruger, 54, is recovering at a Las Vegas-area hospital after the four-hour operation, UNLV said in a statement on its website. He underwent a routine stress test last week and additional tests earlier this week revealed six blockages, the school said.
July 29, 2007 |
Vice President Dick Cheney, who has a history of heart problems, had surgery to replace an implanted device that monitors his heartbeat. Doctors at George Washington University Hospital replaced his battery-powered defibrillator. If the device were to sense an abnormal rhythm, it would deliver an electronic shock to reset Cheney's heart to a normal beat. "The device was successfully replaced without complication," said Megan McGinn, Cheney's deputy press secretary.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 13, 2007 |
Californians needing a coronary bypass can now, for the first time, look up which surgeons in the state have the best -- and worst -- mortality rates for that operation. A report released Thursday names and rates 302 surgeons who performed heart bypass operations at 121 California hospitals during 2003 and 2004. Prepared by the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, the 143-page study is posted on the office's website, www.oshpd.ca.gov.
April 9, 2007 |
Open heart surgery, which many patients and doctors have avoided in the last decade in favor of less-invasive heart stents, is making a comeback. Recent studies suggest that bypass surgery could extend many patients' lives longer than stents, the tiny devices designed to reinforce damaged arteries. The newest generation of stents, which are coated with drugs meant to inhibit blood clots, might actually increase the risk of clots compared with older, bare-metal versions, other studies suggest.