Medical care for your heart during pandemic

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — With many people worried about getting sick, you may feel hesitant to see a doctor. But doctors in KELOLAND say you shouldn’t wait to seek care.

Dr. Susheel Gundewar with Avera St. Lukes says the coronavirus pandemic has resulted in some patients postponing health care to avoid getting sick. He says patients shouldn’t wait, especially when it comes to your heart.

“We’ve seen several cases where the patients have come in a little too late after they’ve damaged their heart muscle because they’ve been waiting for things to get better before they see their doctor. So I think that is a challenge that we’ve been facing,” Gundewar said.

Fortunately, when Harvey Remily began experiencing shortness of breath, he didn’t wait.

“I couldn’t hardly walk. I walk everyday at the gymnasium and it got so, I couldn’t hardly walk in the house so I knew I had to do something,” Remily said.

After examining Remily, Dr. Gundewar discovered two blocked arteries.

“One was definitely 100 percent and the other was a 70 percent blockage in an artery, in a location that we call the widow maker. So if that 70 percent blockage progressed to 100 percent that would be catastrophic for him,” Gundewar said.

Remily had two stents put in to open the arteries, allowing blood flow back to his heart.

“So that artery is opened up now and that’s carrying the blood supply that part of the heart muscle needs,” Gundewar said.

Though his fears of getting sick with COVID-19 were present, he’s glad he didn’t let them stop him from going in.

“I feel wonderful. It’s just like getting out of bed in this new world for you,” Remily said.

And it’s stories like Remily’s that have Dr. Gundewar urging patients to not to put their health on hold during the pandemic.

To take a look at the symptoms of a clogged artery, click here.

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