Second Opinion: Cardiac Spouses

Second Opinion: Cardiac Spouses

Fri, 08/10/2012 - 10:00pm

Credit: Nic Minetor

Recovering from a heart attack or heart disease can be a family affair.

Learn how the well-being of the caregiver can be an important component of a heart patient's return to good health on Second Opinion: Cardiac Spouses airing Friday, August 10 at 10 p.m. on WXXI-TV/HD (DT21.1/cable 1011/11).

Second Opinion is made possible in part by support from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), which has been the major funder since the series’ inception in 2004.



Life after a heart attack

My husband had a major heart attack at age 59 (1982). We were both employed; three daughters on their own. Now, some 28 years later, I think how we adjusted to that fact. Changes for sure: he could not return to work for six months (he was a design mechanical engineer) at the cardiologist's instructions: go in late; long lunch; come home early......not quite what happened but he was part of a large group who accepted an early balloon retirement (all but he 'volunteered' - he accepted the suggestion that he retire).
Four grandchildren were born during the next years and vacation times spent together means they all remember him fondly. His activities were limited but he could still engage with them. Later we spent three months in FL to keep him warm and able to walk. He continued his volunteer work for a bit till driving became a bit much. A couple of years before he died (8/25/98) he went through five emergency surgeries (not heart related!) and those doctors were pleased at how 'textbook' they went! Dr Marvin Hoffman and then Dr Richard Abbott oversaw his care. How did I I look back I think 'very well, thank you'. Watched him like a hawk for awhile then relaxed - had him call my office every day.....he and my secretary became good friends comparing notes on the daily crossword puzzle and jumble. We took walks on Ontario Beach regularly (lived in Charlotte in a condo having sold our Pittsford Village home in '84). I ended up doing 97% of the driving. Life was good 'considering' - he danced at his two daughters' weddings. We just did not travel wide and far as we had planned....we enjoyed where we were and where our children lived.....MA, NJ and even GA for a short time. We were fortunate I guess....according to the doctors he should not have survived the heart attack....????