Patient Stories

Patti Fricke

A Heart Stent Saved This Former Nurse’s Life

Patti was a nurse for over 40 years. She has seen more than her fair share of heart patients. One day, she became one herself. It started when she was on vacation in Mexico and noticed a pain in her chest. 

“I looked up at my doctor and said, ‘thank you for saving me.’ He could've delayed it a month or two, but he didn't because he knew what he was doing. And they have truly, I gotta say, I believe that they saved my life.

“All of a sudden I started feeling heavy, crushing chest pain, just like it was being squeezed, and short of breath. I was ... what is this? I've never had or experienced anything like that.

Despite being a nurse, Patti ignored the pain and eventually it went away. Then one night, the chest pain woke her out of a sound sleep. That’s when she knew she could no longer ignore the problem. So she made an appointment to see her doctor at Memorial.

“He asked me a few specific questions. Then he just kind of cut me off abruptly and said, "You're going to the cath lab today.”

After a round of tests in the Memorial Cath Lab, the findings were startling. Patti had a 99.9% blockage in her main artery. It was the kind of blockage that most people wouldn’t have survived. She needed a stent to save her life.

“I looked up at my doctor and said, ‘thank you for saving me.’ He could've delayed it a month or two, but he didn't because he knew what he was doing. And they have truly, I gotta say, I believe that they saved my life. 

After the procedure, Patti no longer experienced chest pains. In fact, she had more energy than she’d had in years.

“I can walk out and do all my errands during the day and I don't have any shortness of breath and I don't have any pain in my joints. It truly, truly is like having a new life. I am a new person.”

Today, Patti enjoys being outside, exercising, riding her bike and cooking healthy meals for herself. She feels like she has a new lease on life – and she owes it all to the doctors and staff at Memorial Medical Center.

“Everybody that was at Memorial Medical Center on that day and took care of me, I wouldn't be sitting here if it hadn't been for them.”

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