In December 2011, after suffering from chest pains for more than a day, Larry Larkin, 66, asked his wife to drive him to the Seton Hays Emergency Department.
“I walked up to the counter and the young lady asked me what seemed to be the matter. I told her it felt like a mule had kicked me in the chest. Everyone staffing the check-in desk jumped into action,” recalls Larkin. “When I asked, ‘What is going on?’, one of them responded, ‘Don’t you know? You are having a heart attack!’ “
Larkin was immediately administered nitroglycerin tablets and aspirin. Within 15 minutes his blood pressure and pulse had returned to a normal state.
“The people in the ER were fantastic,” says Larkin. “They swarmed over me like bees. Everyone around me was overwhelmingly confident in what they were doing and that reassured me.”
The next morning, Larkin met with Cardiologist Douglas Salmon, MD, (Live Oak Cardiology). “He stated that he was calling in his crew who were supposed to have the day off … to place a stent in my distal circumflex artery,” adds Larkin.
Before being released from the hospital, Larkin was told he had to make some important choices. He could continue living and eating like he was – fatty foods and no exercise – and experience another cardiac event in two years, or eat right, exercise and take his medications properly and live 25 more years without another event. “I chose door number two,” smiles Larkin.
Larkin signed up for Cardiac Rehab at Seton Hays, has changed his diet and takes all of his medications as prescribed. He has lost 30 pounds, his cholesterol is great and his blood pressure is back in the normal range.
“We knew nothing about Seton Hays except that it was close,” shares Larry’s wife Janet. “However, when we learned it specialized in heart care, we felt very blessed to have stumbled in there.
“With Seton Hays in Kyle, we are just minutes away from great health care,” continues Larkin. “IF there is something that they can’t handle, they have a network of facilities and healthcare professionals at their finger tips.”
Seton Hays offers 24-hour invasive cardiac catheterization and emergent cardiac surgery. In addition to emergency care, Seton Hays offers diagnostic and interventional treatment including heart catheterizations, coronary stent placement, angioplasty and pacemaker insertion. Seton Hays also provides cardiovascular services including open heart surgery.