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After Emergency Treatment, Cardiac Patient Embraces Healthy Living

Overweight and leading an admittedly unhealthy lifestyle, Cleveland was just 48 years old when he began having chest and arm pain. Concerned, he contacted a longtime friend, Memorial cardiologist Barry Schiff, MD.

Tests revealed an artery in his heart was 98 percent blocked, and Cleveland underwent emergency angioplasty and stenting to restore blood flow. The treatment at Memorial Cardiac and Vascular Institute at Memorial Regional Hospital saved Cleveland's life, but he was far from cured.

"I needed some serious behavior modification," Cleveland says.

Making Lifesaving Changes

Three months after his angioplasty, Cleveland was involved in a nearly fatal motorcycle accident that sidelined him for seven months. Although he couldn't exercise, he had plenty of time to consider lifestyle changes. He used that time to learn more about food, exercise and lifestyle choices.

In Cleveland's case, neglect had led to an unhealthy condition called metabolic syndrome, which included the terrible trio of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar. With his doctor's guidance Cleveland began following a plan that combined better eating habits with over-the-counter vitamins, prescription medications and exercise. Music and television also helped Cleveland relax and stay positive.

Cleveland became a motivated participant in his own convalescence.

Healthy Philosophy

By following the plan, Cleveland has dropped 60 pounds and now has normal blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Because he understands how his lifestyle choices affect his health, he finds it easy to comply.

It's been four years since his emergency procedure and Cleveland is determined to maintain his good health. He's also helping his overweight friends change their habits.

"It's a matter of knowledge and self-respect," he says. "I was aging before my time and have been rejuvenated. I credit Memorial and Dr. Schiff because I look good, feel good and am going to be around a lot longer."


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To find a physician who is committed to South Florida healthcare services, call Memorial Physician Referral Service toll-free at (800) 944-DOCS. We're available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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