Heart Holes and PFOs

The Annals of Cardiology No.17 | Heart Holes and PFOs. What is a PFO? Do you have a hole in in your heart? Who’s Samantha? Find out the answers to these questions and many more in this week’s newsletter.


The Annals of Cardiology No.17 | Heart Holes and PFOs

You can read the introduction below or read the full version here.

By the time you’re sixty, one expects a few entries in your medical chart. For some that might mean an arthroscopy, a knee replacement, or maybe a gall bladder gone missing. But what happens when you’re twenty-three and you’re suddenly struck with “an old person’s disease?” That’s what Samantha faced last year.

Samantha was a newly-minted accountant and had moved from Calgary to Bermuda to make some money, take up scuba diving, and de-chill her Canadian marrow. However, one day last spring, while shopping in Hamilton, she forgot what she came to purchase. This is not unheard of when you’re seventy-three, but when you’re twenty-three it’s disconcerting. She turned to go home but then couldn’t remember where she’d parked her scooter. A friend spotted her on the corner of Reid and Queen streets, and asked her what was up. When she tried to speak, her words garbled, her mouth drooped, and she realized she was drooling. When she lifted her hand to wipe the spittle, she missed her mouth and knocked off her designer sunglasses. Her friend thought she was having a stroke, flagged a cab, and rushed her to the hospital.

Continued in the full newsletter…

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