The team at Bronson got me through the surgery and it’s worked out well for me.
Edo doesn’t just believe in living a healthy lifestyle, he is an academic expert on the subject. He has always been dedicated to daily exercise, a heart-healthy diet and regular checkups. That’s why Dr. Weits was shocked when he began to have heart problems in July 2010 that led to open heart surgery.
Edo Weits, EdD doesn’t just believe in living a healthy lifestyle, he is an academic expert on the subject. As a Professor Emeritus in the Holistic Health Care department at Western Michigan University, Dr. Weits’ expertise includes holistic health, stress management and human development. He knows the importance of daily exercise, a heart-healthy diet and regular checkups.
Throughout his life, those regular checkups always revealed healthy cholesterol and blood lipid levels. At age 65, he was also dedicated to a strict exercise schedule and mostly vegetarian diet. That’s why Dr. Weits was so shocked when he began to have heart problems in July 2010 that led to open heart surgery at Bronson Methodist Hospital.
“I had a series of angina attacks that prompted me to go see my family doctor, who was as shocked as I was,” Weits says. Angina is repeating pain or discomfort in the chest that happens when part of the heart does not receive enough blood. Weits recorded six angina attacks in July. His family doctor in Lawton referred him to cardiologist Michael Pack, DO, medical director of adult echocardiography at Bronson. Dr. Pack did a series of tests and found seven different blockages in his arteries. This prompted Dr. Pack to refer Weits to surgeon Michael P. Halpin, MD at Bronson Cardiothoracic Surgery. Weits was scheduled for a triple bypass surgery on Aug. 9, 2010 to improve blood flow in his heart. During the first week of August, Weits had 16 more angina attacks. He experienced five attacks alone just three days before his scheduled surgery.
“I didn’t think I would make it to my surgery, so I drove myself to Bronson. I went right into Dr. Halpin’s office and was immediately admitted to the cardiology unit,” he remembers. From day one of his hospital stay, Weits was impressed by the care he received from the entire Bronson cardiac team. “What was really impressive is that Dr. Halpin came to see me every single day, including before my surgery. He came to explain everything that was going to happen, asked me how I was doing and checked all of my medication himself. Dr. Pack also came in multiple times to see me. It was very reassuring to have my doctors right there all the time. The whole nursing staff is just incredible. They are there 24 hours a day keeping an eye on you.”
Weits’ surgery was a success and his positive Bronson experience continued during his five days of recovery at the hospital. He is particularly grateful for the care of a very special nurse, Michael Hudon, RN. Weits was so impressed with Hudon’s care that he wrote a letter of appreciation to Bronson President & CEO Frank Sardone. “Michael was my nurse during the first 12 hours after my surgery. I was in pain and extremely vulnerable, and the way he communicated with me was so impressive. He wasn’t patronizing, which would have driven me crazy. Instead, he talked to me like a regular human being and provided rationale for everything that was happening. He checked on me constantly, gave me more pain medicine when I needed it and helped me feel as comfortable as possible.”
Weits continues to be impressed by Bronson’s care since leaving the hospital. “The Bronson at Home nurses who came to my house did an excellent job. They were very thorough with checking my blood pressure and incision, and making sure I limited my exertion.” He attended Bronson Outpatient Cardiac Rehabilitati three days a week at the Bronson Lifestyle Improvement & Research Center. “They have such a well-supervised and well-run program there. They monitor you before, during and after exercise. They also provide wonderful education both in person and with written materials. It was a great program to get me back up to speed.”
Starting off a new year and looking forward to his 66th birthday in 2011, Weits feels great and is back to his regular routine. He’s traveling and teaching, and making sure to continue the healthy lifestyle he’s always lived. That means a heart-healthy diet consisting of plenty of vegetables, fruit and whole grains. He also makes sure to exercise no matter where he is. To other men age 40 and above, Weits advises getting regular checkups even if you live and feel healthy like he did. He also warns everyone to treat chest pain seriously. “When you get pain in your chest, don’t ignore or neglect it. Have it checked out immediately. I thought maybe my lungs were just burning a bit because I was running long distance at the time. But when it came back a couple of times, I knew it was time to go to my family doctor.”
For a professor who teaches stress management, Weits is glad to be fully recovered and stress-free once again. He remains grateful for the care he received at Bronson. “It’s quite an ordeal to have your chest cut open and your heart stopped to repair it. It was an incredible sequence of events. The team at Bronson got me through the surgery and it’s worked out well for me.”For a professor who teaches stress management, Weits is glad to be fully recovered and stress-free once again. He remains grateful for the care he received at Bronson. “It’s quite an ordeal to have your chest cut open and your heart stopped to repair it. It was an incredible sequence of events. The team at Bronson got me through the surgery and it’s worked out well for me.”