participating in the 2014 Philadelphia Heart Walk. Here, he answers questions every heart failure patient should read.
|Bob Goodman and Penn nurses Rachel Cress and Stephanie Barlow. Bob is participating in the |
2014 Philadelphia Heart Walk as a way to say thanks to those that saved his life.
After being diagnosed with an incredibly rare heart condition, Bob needed a heart transplant. Now, several months after the transplant, Bob is gearing up for the 2014 Philadelphia Heart Walk. Here’s what he had to say, when asked why he’s so passionate and involved in this year’s walk.
Why are you participating in the Heart Walk?
"It is a wonderful way to recognize my one year anniversary of receiving a heart transplant. There were so many people involved in my care up to and after my transplant and many of them will be at the Heart Walk. I just want to personally thank them. It also represents the beginning of my getting back to a normal lifestyle –a comeback of sorts. And last, but not least, I want to support the movement to bring attention to heart disease, to encourage others to prevent it and to help support cardiovascular research."
"I've heard many hospitals talk about being 'multi-disciplinary', but at Penn, I saw this kind of teamwork first hand. They consulted with one another, and they acted as a team."
— Bob Goodman, heart transplant patient
What was it like being in heart failure?
"It was horrible. I was used to leading an active lifestyle, but in heart failure, I couldn't travel to visit my daughter, and I ended up messing up vacation plans that were in the works. When I did go on vacation, I wasn't the same. We were at Disney World with my daughter and her friend and I passed out and had to be taken to the local hospital. I didn't have the stamina or energy that I used to."
What would you say to patients going through heart failure?
"My answer is simple, and it is something that I didn't know back then but something that I know now. There is treatment for all of this! Do your best to keep a good attitude and keep motivated. So much of what you can do to get through your illness is your attitude. You need to be in a good place in your head. And lastly, don't be afraid to lean on those that are there to support you – a spouse, a partner, a friend - someone else with who will likely hear those things you've missed. You don't always hear everything correctly when you're at the doctors – you may be emotional that day or not feeling well – and you might miss something important."
How did you feel about being diagnosed with cardiac sarcoidosis?
My feelings were very mixed. There was fear. I had a confirmed diagnosis of sarcoidosis, and there was not a lot of information about it when compared to other heart conditions. No one knows how I got it or exactly how to treat it, and that is scary. There was anger - you go through the "Why me?" phase. But there was also a sort of relief in getting a name on it, knowing that there was some work done on it.
You came to Penn after your journey with heart disease had already begun. How did you feel about Penn?
"I felt comfort from the very moment that I arrived. I knew I was at a place where they finally got it. These guys knew what they were doing. From that moment, I never once felt any differently. I've heard many hospitals talk about being 'multi-disciplinary', but at Penn, I saw this kind of teamwork first hand. They consulted with one another, and they acted as a team. This was not done once or twice but all the time, and it continues to be done. It was amazing care."