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The Heart of the Problem

Jim Eller’s heart attack 12 years ago took him and his family by surprise.

“We were shocked. I was 48 years old. No family history of heart disease. Nothing to make us suspicious,” says Jim, along with his wife Patricia and father Joseph.

Jim’s heart attack occurred in the GSH Emergency and Trauma Center, where he had gone to seek immediate help. The specially trained staff went into action, applying life-saving techniques on the spot. As a result of that episode, Jim had an angioplasty to open severe blockage in one artery. For years, all went well. Then, in December 2004, Jim had to undergo a second angioplasty at GSH.

Just before this angioplasty, the surgeon discovered an aneurysm in the left ventricle of Jim’s heart—a development that could cause chronic heart failure. At this point, cardiovascular surgeon Dr. Mohey Saleh took charge of Jim’s treatment. Dr. Saleh recommended surgical ventricular restoration (SVR).

Today, Jim says he “feels good enough to be overworking again.” Now 60, Jim recently stepped down as chair of the Mechanical Engineering Department at Sinclair Community College to once again be a full-time professor of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. Jim is one of many patients who are grateful that GSH offers such leading-edge procedures as SVR—as well as the skilled surgeons who perform them.