At the Heart of a Cardiac Team
Just 41 years old, Parag Parikh was young and healthy, or so he thought. But on a recent afternoon, when he began experiencing tingling in his shoulder, discomfort and a racing feeling in his chest, he thought he should call 9-1-1, just to be safe.
Within minutes of their arrival, the paramedic team performed an electrocardiogram (EKG) and sent the results directly to Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center via LifeNet. This communications system enables ambulances in Montgomery County to transmit critical information to Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center while patients are en route, allowing for the appropriate care to be ready as soon as the patient arrives.
Immediately upon his arrival at Shady Grove, Parag was rushed to the catheterization lab, where interventional cardiologist Dr. Michael Castine performed an emergency percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), or angioplasty, to relieve a blockage in one of Parag's arteries.
After his surgery, a program of rehabilitation and exercise was prescribed for Parag. "There is a multidisciplinary team dedicated to rehabilitating patients after a cardiac event," according to Dennis Friedman, M.D., medical director of cardiac and vascular services and cardiac rehabilitation at Shady Grove. Specialists, including cardiologists, nurses, physiologists, dietitians and certified diabetes educators, work together as a team and directly with patients to improve their quality of life and prevent the progression of heart disease.
For Parag, the entire experience was a wake-up call to improve his health. He describes his new found focus on a heart-healthy lifestyle as "helping me regain my confidence, physically and emotionally."