Dedicated to Keeping Your Heart Healthy
The right treatment for heart conditions can limit the damage to your heart muscle and many people survive heart attacks and live active, full lives. Health First’s expert physicians, staff, and state-of-the-art cardiac services are located close to home and all of the heart and vascular physicians are board certified. Dr. Ajit Janardhan, known as “Dr. AJ” and Dr. Ross Goodfellow are just two of Health First’s physicians who offer the leading cardiac treatments available.
No one knows this importance better than Mike Perry who was a patient of Dr. AJ and Dr. Goodfellow. He is grateful to have his life back to normal after treatment for PVCs. PVCs, or premature ventricular contractions, are abnormal extra heart beats that arise from the bottom pumping chambers of the heart and cause the heart to contract in an inefficient and abnormal manner. At 39 years old, Mike thought his symptoms were stress related, but after relocating to Brevard County with his wife of 15 years and taking a less stressful job, his symptoms continued.
Symptoms include a fluttering or flip-flopping in the chest, palpitations, chest discomfort, a feeling of flushness or fullness in the chest or throat, lightheadedness and rarely, chest pain.
“It felt like my heart would skip a beat and then pause,” Mike explained. “It was distracting because it was on my mind 24/7.”
Mike even experienced low energy and couldn’t keep up when playing with his young children. At his initial appointment with Dr. Goodfellow, who recommended he see Dr. AJ, Mike was ecstatic to learn that he could feel better for the rest of his life.
“He told me, ‘I think we can fix this totally,’” Mike said. “That was an awesome concept.”
For patients, the first step is determining if the PVCs are causing symptoms or are frequent enough to warrant an intervention.
“If they do warrant treatment, we generally start by trying to suppress the PVCs using medications,” explained Dr. AJ. “If this fails, an electrophysiology study with catheter ablation is usually the next step.”
This was Mike’s treatment. The procedure involved placing catheters in the heart, identifying the abnormal focus, and then destroying the abnormal focus by heating the tissue with the tip of a catheter. “Other treatment approaches include medications to diminish symptoms of palpitations and occasionally antiarrhtyhmics,” said Dr. Goodfellow.
For Mike, the results were dramatic for his quality of life.
“It feels great to be normal,” Mike said. “I can play with my kids and I can keep up with them!”
A month after his procedure, he returned to see Dr. AJ and was told he was cured. “That was amazing to hear.”
Ross Goodfellow, DO, is board certified in interventional cardiology, cardiovascular disease, endovascular medicine and internal medicine. His professional interests include interventional and pharmacologic treatment of cardiovascular disease, acute coronary syndrome, and antiplatelet therapy.
Ajit Janardhan, M.D., Ph.D., is board certified in clinical cardiac electrophysiology, cardiovascular diseases and internal medicine. He practices cardiac electrophysiology with the Health First Medical Group and is on staff at Health First’s Cape Canaveral Hospital in Cocoa Beach and Health First’s Holmes Regional Medical Center in Melbourne.
Health First has four local hospitals to meet heart care needs. For more information visit HFheart.org