Cheryl Godfrey knew the signs.
“If I did anything other than sit, I felt pain in the middle of my chest radiating up into my throat,” she said. “I’d had a heart attack before, so after a while I knew what was coming. Once I went to the ER, I was on the fast train. I was there for a little over an hour and they had me admitted.”
One of Cheryl’s largest coronary arteries was severely blocked. According to interventional cardiologist Mike Wilson, M.D., “This is a very common problem – and potentially very dangerous.”
But, while Cheryl had a common problem, her treatment was anything but. Since she is relatively young, with several metal stents in her heart already, Dr. Wilson opened Cheryl’s artery with brand new technology, a dissolving stent for which he helped secure FDA approval.
“I was involved in the clinical trial,” he said. “The FDA just released it for use. For younger people, you’re not leaving a piece of metal in the heart. It’s also good for athletes. The vessel functions more naturally when the stent disappears.”
While traditional metal stents are permanent implants, the Absorb stent disappears in approximately three years, after it has done its job of keeping a clogged artery open and helping it to heal.
Today, Cheryl is on the fast train to recovery. “Every day I’m exercising more,” she said. “I just feel good. I’ve had stents before and the advancements are just amazing – all due to the clinical trials and medical advancements.”
Providence Heart Institute participates in 30 to 40 clinical trials each year. “People should be open to new treatments,” Cheryl advises. “If your Providence physician says it’s been tested and it’s the best option, you can trust they know what they’re doing.”
You can read more about Cheryl’s innovative treatment here.