Navigation Links
Myocarditis can attack hearts without warning
Date:11/12/2010

James "Jimmy" Armstrong hadn't missed a "Mac" in 28 years. At 44, he's one of the youngest "goats" in the Chicago Yacht Club. Sailors receive the designation of "goat" once they've completed 20 or more "Macs", the 333-mile boat race from Chicago to Mackinac, Mich. Armstrong has sailed the race every year since he was 16. But, he wasn't among the sailors this past July. Instead, he was in intensive care awaiting heart transplant following a harrowing experience spurred by severe case of myocarditisa little-known condition causing inflammation of the heart muscle.

"I don't remember much of what happened to me. A lot of it is a blur," said Armstrong, a local business owner and father of three young daughters. "I was thinking I had a bad cold or even food poisoning, and then suddenly my health spiraled out of control."

Armstrong had no prior history of heart problems. However, persistent bouts of dizziness and nausea sent him into the emergency room of his suburban hospital June 6. Cardiac imaging confirmed Armstrong had acute myocarditis. While not always life-threatening, in many cases it can lead to heart failure or sudden cardiac death. Physicians believe it is caused by either a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection; drug or chemical poisoning; or connective tissue diseases, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.

According to Northwestern Medicine Cardiologist William Cotts, MD, patients can often have fever, aches and severe fatigue similar to cold or flu-like symptoms. This can sometimes correct with no lasting damage. But in severe cases like Armstrong's there's often the presence of an irregular heartbeat and trouble breathingand symptoms usually present once the patient is already in heart failure.

This was the case with Armstrong. When he was referred to Northwestern Medicine's cardiac specialists at the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute, the myocarditis had so aggressively deteriorated his heart function that full supportin effect an artificial-heart-like devicewas his only hope.

Edwin C. McGee, Jr. MD, surgical director for the Bluhm Institute's heart transplant and assist device program was Armstrong's cardiac surgeon. Although Armstrong ultimately required heart transplant, in July he received life-saving intervention where two HeartWare ventricular assist devices (VAD) were implanted onto both ventricles of his heart as a "bridge to transplant", sustaining heart function until a heart became available. This was the first time anywhere in North Americaand to date the onlyinstance of using the small VADs in a biventricular configurationtwo VADs instead of oneimplanted on a single heart. This particular device is one of the smallest, full-support experimental VADs currently available for study in humans in the U.S.

This past Oct. 15, Armstrong received a heart transplant. The American Heart Association estimates that an average of 300,000 people die every year from heart failure; 10,000 of them qualify for heart transplant, but only 2000 cardiac transplants occur in the US each year due to lack of organs. Assist devices such as what Armstrong received are becoming an increasingly important therapy to help individuals with advanced heart failure.

"I may never know why or how I contracted the myocarditis that destroyed my heart," Armstrong said. "But I know I wouldn't be here if Northwestern's team hadn't acted as fast as they did to save my life."


'/>"/>

Contact: Kris Lathan
klathan@nmh.org
312-926-7432
Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. American Heart Association Rapid Access Journal Report: Study Finds Racial Gaps Continue in Heart Disease Awareness, Low Knowledge of Heart Attack Warning Signs Among Women
2. Migraine Linked to Increased Heart Attack Risk
3. Attacking cancer cells with hydrogel nanoparticles
4. Women Need More Help After Heart Attack
5. Poll: Hypothetical anthrax attack and antibiotics
6. Bitter melon extract attacks breast cancer cells
7. Fatigue May Predict Heart Attack in Dialysis Patients
8. Doctor Joseph Racanelli is Helping Christina Get Back Her Shape After Brutal Attack
9. Cutting Off Blood Flow to Heart Cuts Damage During Heart Attack
10. Cutting Off Blood Flow to Heart Limits Damage During Heart Attack
11. Cutting Off Blood Flow Limits Damage During Heart Attack
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... While it’s often important to take certain medications during the night, finding them ... a solution. , She developed a prototype for MOTION LIGHT-UP PILL BOX to provide ... need to turn on a light when taking medication during the night, allowing the ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Lori R. Somekh, founder of the ... national organization of elder law and special needs planning attorneys. “Membership in ElderCounsel helps ... provides a forum to network with elder law attorneys nationwide,” said Somekh. , ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare ... scenic Alexandria Park in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare ... activity. The fun run is geared towards children of all ages; it is ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history of the United States and the ... published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and his wife, Millie, have six children, ... in the Navy. Following his career as a naval aviator and carrier pilot, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, Inc. ... products, announced today the introduction of an innovative new design of the shoulder pad. ... so you get maximum comfort while controlling your pain while using cold therapy. By ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/28/2017)... 2017 Cohen Veterans Bioscience and Early Signal ... wearable and home sensors for real-time monitoring of patients ... a nonprofit organization focused on disruptive health solutions for ... analytical system to record and integrate behavioral, cognitive, physiological ... ...
(Date:9/25/2017)... 25, 2017   Montrium , an industry ... today—from the IQPC Trial Master Files & Inspection ... that EastHORN Clinical Services has selected eTMF ... TMF management. EastHORN, a leading European contract research ... increase transparency to enable greater collaboration with sponsors, ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... 22, 2017  As the latest Obamacare repeal effort ... Cassidy (R-LA) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) ... medical device industry is in an odd place.  The ... 2.3% excise tax on medical device sales passed along ... covered patients, increased visits and hospital customers with the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: