Russell McNeeley with his physician and staff members at Mercy Health - St. Rita's Medical Center.
Heart and Vascular

“I Feel Amazing”: Russell’s Heart Story

Mar 10 2020

Russell McNeeley was experiencing chronic heart failure.

His heart values were not closing properly which was causing blood and excess fluid to build up in his lungs as well as the rest of his body. Over the years, his symptoms became progressively worse. He was in and out of the hospital multiple times.

Traditionally, a patient with this condition would have to undergo open heart surgery to have their valves fixed. However, at 82-years-old, Russell was considered too old for further surgical treatment. That is until he was referred to Sandeep Patel, MD, an Interventional Cardiologist at Mercy Health – St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima, OH.

At Mercy Health, Russell was offered a minimally invasive procedure called MitraClip™ / TriClip. This new procedure is available for patients who are high risk and not eligible for surgery due to various health factors.

In the past, this procedure was not available in the Lima area. However, because of the structural heart and interventional team’s extensive training as well as the expertise of Dr. Patel, cardiac patients now have advanced cardiac options close to home.

What is the MitraClip™ / TriClip?

The mitral and tricuspid heart valves lie on the right and left side of the heart. They are important in that they help regulate flow of blood into the main pumping chambers of the heart, also known as the ventricles.

The MitraClip™ / TriClip is a small clip that is attached to both the patient’s mitral and tricuspid valves. From there, the clip treats mitral and tricuspid regurgitation by allowing the valves to close more completely. This then helps restore normal forward blood flow through the heart.

“I feel amazing,” Russel says regarding the aftermath of his procedure. “I don’t notice any shortness of breath, pain or discomfort…”

People like Russell who are not candidates for open heart surgery are usually great ones for MitraClip™ / TriClip. This procedure is completed with a puncture through the femoral vein and has no major surgical incision. Compared to open heart surgery, MitraClip™ / TriClip drops recovery time to 4 to 6 hours and allows patients to go home within 1 to 2 days.

“Dr. Patel is a very talented and caring gentleman,” Russel adds. “Staff were excellent and were there whenever I needed them. We are very lucky to have such qualified physicians and staff here in Lima to do this procedure.”

Learn more about the heart and vascular services offered at Mercy Health.  

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