Thanks to Manhattan Heart, I Can Enjoy the Beach

When a trip to the beach did not alleviate his discomfort and queasiness, Mark sought out immediate medical attention for his progressively weakening state (being unable to climb the stairs and sleep lying down) - and the Mount Sinai Manhattan Heart team was there to help

It was a bright summer day. I was travelling by train, and then car, from Manhattan to meet with several friends who had rented a large beach house for a week on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Although I was not feeling at full capacity, I thought that my discomfort and queasiness would be greatly diminished after a day or two in the sun. However, as it turned out, I spent my entire vacation in bed, feeling progressively weaker and unable to climb stairs easily or sleep lying down.

Upon returning to New York, I immediately sought out my internist and was sent directly to the hospital emergency room. I was admitted with a diagnosis of bilateral pneumonia. That quickly changed to a diagnosis of heart failure, a very compromised and nearly defective mitral valve – and, in addition, a small blood clot was detected in my lower lung. The next day, I was admitted to intensive care, feeling worse than when I came to the hospital, and, at the time, I was so scared that I might not make it out. No one seemed to know exactly how to initiate care or to offer a valid prognosis. This is when Ira Blaufarb, MD, FACC and his Mount Sinai Manhattan Heart team were brought in to help manage my care.

Dr. Blaufarb Guided Me Every Step Through My Terrifying Ordeal

Dr. Blaufarb quickly determined that I was also having an irregular heart rhythm. He adjusted my medications, transferred me to the coronary care unit, and had a specialist see me to bring my rhythm to a more normal pace. Within 24 hours, I was feeling much better and could see that I might actually make it through this very terrifying situation.

As it turned out, I remained in the hospital for another 10 days, during which time I continued to improve, underwent a panoply of further diagnostic tests – which eventually, after five days, provided the necessary data required for open heart surgery and successful mitral valve repair and procedures aimed to prevent future irregular rhythms.

Dr. Blaufarb and his team were terrific. He quickly and forcefully took charge of my care within the first few hours of my arrival to the hospital. He addressed each problem in a direct and straightforward manner. With each decision and with each change, I could see and feel myself getting better. Whenever it seemed that a new challenge or difficulty presented itself, Dr. Blaufarb was there to guide the team of surgeons, electro-physiologists and others taking care of me.

After I left the hospital, Dr. Blaufarb has continued to meet with me, adjust my medications (as warranted), and help ensure me that I would get much better. Although, even now there are still some decisions that will need to be made regarding my medical care, I am sure that going forward, Dr. Blaufarb and the team at Manhattan Heart will have a comprehensive plan for taking the very best of care.

With My Nightmare Behind Me, I'm So Thankful for My New Life

After nearly five months later, I was 100 percent back – working, feeling reinvigorated about my new life, with my nightmare now behind me.

Thank you, Dr. Blaufarb!
Mark Muesing