The Doctors: What If Your Heart Stopped Beating?
Pain is an unfortunate part of life for many Americans. But could it be worse than you think? Maybe it is putting your life at risk, without you even realizing it. The Doctors revealed how a small Impella device saved a new mom’s life.
The Drs: Impella Implant
Sisters told the story of a pregnancy, during which the expectant mother had no appetite and made frequent emergency room visits. “They would just attribute every symptom to pregnancy,” she said, but obviously something else was wrong.
One morning, the pregnant woman woke up and couldn’t move her legs. She had a seizure, and she and the baby nearly died, because her heart was failing. Emergency labor was induced to save the baby’s life, and the woman, Iman, had a machine beating her heart for her.
But there was a ray of hope on the horizon. A small pump could be inserted into the heart and relieve the stress to let the heart beat on its own again. The surgery was successful, and today Iman says, “the Impella implant definitely saved my life.”
The Doctors: Can Dental Work Affect Your Heart?
Iman and her family were in the studio for a follow up on this scary story. To explain more about the situation, Iman’s cardiologist, Dr Ray Matthews, also appeared on the show. He said that Iman had a dental visit that could have released oral bacteria into her bloodstream.
“Your heart valves are structures that don’t have their own blood supply, so the bacteria can actually attach to the heart valves and actually create this infection,” he said. “That’s why it’s really important that, when you go to the dentist, you let them know if you have a problem with your heart valves,” because they can prescribe antibiotics to prevent complications.
The Drs: Impella Heart Pump
The Impella pump is a tiny pump inserted through the Aorta into the left ventricle of the heart. It moves blood using a small propellor, and it managed Iman’s heartbeat while the muscle recovered its own strength. As an OB/GYN, Dr Lisa Masterson said that this device could be a game changer.
“This is absolutely phenomenal, because Postpartum Cardiac Myopathy can be…life threatening,” she said.
Dr Travis Stork said the average heart is the size of a fist. Dr Matthews showed off the Impella heart device, which is smaller than a pencil. Something that small can be a lifesaver, which is amazing.