Adam’s Heart Valve Surgery Blog

Get the latest news, patient advice and insights about heart valve surgery from Adam Pick, patient, author and website founder

Tom Felt Like a “Walking Time Bomb” After Aortic Aneurysm Diagnosis

By Adam Pick on July 12, 2019

Being diagnosed with severe heart disease can be incredibly dislocating for patients, their family and friends.   That dislocation is often amplified when the diagnosis is unexpected and the patient is asymptomatic.

Tom Tansor – a father, husband and little league coach from Chicago – describes the unexpected and anxious experience of being diagnosed with a severe aortic aneurysm as feeling like a “walking time bomb”.   Tom knew the situation was bad.  Tom knew the aneurysm needed to be replaced.  But, after meeting with Dr. Chris Malaisrie, Tom was hopeful he could keep his own aortic valve in a complex procedure known as a “valve-sparing aortic root replacement”.

This is Tom’s story…

 

 

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11 Weeks After TAVR, Mick Jagger Wows 60,000 Fans in Chicago!!!

By Adam Pick on June 25, 2019

It’s been 11 quick weeks since Mick Jagger had a transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) to treat severe aortic stenosis, a deadly form of heart disease that is under-diagnosed and under-treated.

During his recovery, Mick has been seen walking in Central Park and practicing his infamous dance moves in an empty studio.  However… On Friday night, Mick demonstrated – in front of 60,000 people – just how transformative non-invasive TAVR can be. That’s right. Mick, 75, took to the stage for the first time since his TAVR as the Rolling Stones’ 2019 No Filter tour kicked-off at Chicago’s Soldier Field.

 

 
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Move Over Taylor Swift! David Sets New Fashion Trend!

By Adam Pick on June 20, 2019

Ya just gotta see it… To love it.

Here is David Russ modeling a new t-shirt that is setting fashion trends from Milan to Paris to Los Angeles. That’s right. After his aortic valve replacement by Dr. Kevin Accola at AdventHealth, David took to Facebook to show off a fantastic, post-op smile and an awesome t-shirt featuring a cow standing on top of a heart rhythm.

 

 

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“Every Heartbeat Matters” to Impact 1.5 Million Underserved People! Go Amanda!

By Adam Pick on June 5, 2019

I love hearing about great people at responsible companies doing extraordinary things!

That said… I want…. I need… I must… Congratulate Amanda Fowler, the Executive Director of the Edwards Lifesciences Foundation, for leading the Every Heartbeat Matters charitable initiative.  This global campaign, which involves the education, the screening, and the treatment of heart valve disease is on track to reach 1.5 million underserved people by 2020.  The original estimate was 1 million people by 2020.

 

Amanda Fowler (right), Executive Director of the Edwards Lifesciences Foundation,
Screening Patients in the Dominican Republic with Empowering Action

 

Reflecting on this wonderful achievement, Amanda shared, “Since the Every Heartbeat Matters initiative began five years ago, we have made substantial progress in building a global community that is addressing the burden of heart valve disease for underserved people. This year, we plan to continue growing our giving focus on Every Heartbeat Matters and deepening our partners’ impact with the engagement of our talented and dedicated employees around the world.”

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Bicuspid Aortic Valve Patient Symposium Announced for June 12 in Chicago!

By Adam Pick on May 28, 2019

Mark your calendars!

I just learned there is a Bicuspid Aortic Valve Symposium for patients happening in Chicago, Illinois on Wednesday, June 12 from 6-8pm at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

During this special live event, you will learn about the latest bicuspid aortic valve research and treatment options from leading doctors and scientists including Dr. Paul Fedak, Dr. Joshua Robinson, Dr. Chris Malaisre, Dr. Jyothi Puthumana and Dr. Michael Markl.

 

 

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2019 Atrial Fibrillation Patient Conference Announced!

By Adam Pick on May 28, 2019

As up to 35% of patients with heart valve disease are diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, I wanted to make sure you knew about the upcoming “Get in Rhythm! Stay in Rhythm” conference to be held in Dallas, Texas on August 9 to August 11.

This patient conference is hosted by StopAFib.org, a great patient education website managed by Melanie True Hills, an extraordinary patient advocate.  During the event, you will learn the most up-to-date research and treatment approaches that may help you get rid of AFib!

 

 
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Mick Jagger Dances 6 Weeks After TAVR on Instagram

By Adam Pick on May 22, 2019

Ya gotta love this…

Just 6 weeks after transcatheter aortic valve replacement surgery, Mick Jagger posts this video at Instagram.  As you will see in the video, Jagger is strutting all the great dance moves he has entertained us with for the past 57 years as the lead singer of The Rolling Stones.

 

 

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Congratulations to Dr. Vaughn Starnes, My Surgeon, For Becoming the 100th President of the AATS!

By Adam Pick on May 18, 2019

As one of his many patients, I am excited to announce that Dr. Vaughn Starnes just became the 100th President of the American Association for Thoracic Surgery (AATS).  Doctor Starnes succeeded another celebrated surgeon here at HeartValveSurgery.com, Dr. David Adams, at the recent AATS Meeting in Toronto, Canada.

Dr. Starnes is more than a heart valve specialist… He’s a heart valve guru!

He performs complex surgery on both adults and children. Some of his former patients include Arnold Schwarzenegger, Max Page and Jimmy Kimmel’s son, Billy.

 

Dr. Vaughn Starnes & Me

 

Dr. Starnes practices here in my home town of Los Angeles. At the Keck School of Medicine of USC, Dr. Starnes is the Chair of the Department of Surgery.  He is also the Co-Director of the Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.  Under his leadership, USC surgeons have conducted more than 50,000 adult and pediatric open heart surgeries to treat heart valves, perform coronary artery bypass grafts, and to repair complex adult and congenital heart defects.

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Yoga Enthusiast, Jean Frank, Is Our 1st Low-Risk TAVR Patient Success Story!

By Adam Pick on May 16, 2019

With all the great results coming out about the low-risk TAVR clinical trials, I am very excited to share the patient success story of Jean Frank.

Jean, who is from Island Lake, Illinois, suffered from severe aortic stenosis symptoms including shortness of breath and fatigue.  As her aortic stenosis progressed, Jean often became dizzy.  Ultimately, Jean could no longer enjoy yoga because her valve had calcified.  Then, Jean heard about the low-risk TAVR clinical trial conducted by Dr. Charles Davidson and Dr. Chris Malaisrie at Northwestern Medicine in Chicago, Illinois, a sponsor of HeartValveSurgey.com.

This is Jean’s story…

 

 

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True or False: 70% of Patients Use Online Reviews to Select Heart Surgeons

By Adam Pick on May 16, 2019

Last week… In my heart valve surgery newsletter, I asked our patient community a very simple question, “Would you recommend your heart surgeon?”

If so, patients could instantly provide their reviews at our online surgeon recommendation form.  Ultimately, the patient recommendations would help current and future patients find and learn about their potential heart surgeons.

I was not prepared for what happened next….

 

 

Within hours, I received 400+ surgeon recommendations from patients all over the world!!!  The patient reviews are still coming in.  As I’m writing this, I just received a patient recommendation for Dr. Marc Gillinov at the Cleveland Clinic and Dr. David Adams at Mount Sinai Hospital.  Next up, I’m getting ready to post this question at our Facebook page that has over 285,000 members.

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