Patient Stories

John Oaks

Livesaving Heart Procedure Ensures RN Continues to Serve Others

After a stress test showed strain on his heart, John Oaks, RN, underwent a heart procedure resulting in three coronary stents he believes saved his life. Without it, he said, he likely would’ve suffered a massive heart attack within a month.

I just want them all to know how grateful I am, because I’m here, and I might not have been.

Registered nurse John Oaks has experienced Memorial's culture of care from two different angles: as a provider and as a patient. Oaks recently began seeing Adeeb Ahmed, MD, a cardiologist at Springfield Clinic. He was experiencing fatigue, chest discomfort and shortness of breath.

"I'm a former ER nurse," said Oaks, who works in Memorial's Infusion Center. "I know what those symptoms mean."

After a stress test showed strain on his heart, Dr. Ahmed inserted three stents into his coronary arteries in a procedure Oaks believes saved his life. Without it, he said, he likely would've suffered a massive heart attack within a month.

"I'm so pleased that I work with such awesome people," Oaks said. "I just want them all to know how grateful I am, because I'm here, and I might not have been."

Mitch Rogers, administrator of Memorial Heart and Vascular Services, said that Memorial's partnerships with the Springfield Clinic and Southern Illinois University School of Medicine strengthen our ability to care for patients like Oaks through innovation and education.

Because of those partnerships, patients can be confident in Memorial's unwavering commitment to making sure our patients receive the best care that we can possibly get," Rogers said. That includes care that continues long after the procedure itself.

Dr. Ahmed agreed, saying that stentsare only about 10 percent of the work his team does. The other 90 percent focuses on long-term recovery and rehabilitation strategies.

"When you are done, we won't leave you alone," he said. "We will be with you, and we are with you at all times."

Today, Oaks is fully recovered, back at work and taking steps to improve his overall health. As a nurse, he has always ensured that patients feel informed and involved in their care.

“I didn’t realize how important and comforting it was until someone did that for me,” he said.

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