Patient Stories

Perhaps the best way to learn about our cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons, the compassionate environment and advanced treatment options for heart and vascular disease is through our patients. We invite you to watch and read these inspiring stories.

Left Ventricular Assist Device: Curtis’ Story

Diagnosed with congestive heart failure, Curtis Dumesnil became so sick he couldn’t breathe. The left ventricular assist device (LVAD) Houston Methodist doctors implanted vastly improved Dumesnil’s health and his quality of life, allowing him to travel, fish and start his own business. “It’s the smartest thing I ever did,” Dumesnil said. “I haven’t felt this good in years.”
Jesse Aldrich was 90 when he arrived at Houston Methodist. He had survived three wars but had developed severe aortic stenosis, a serious heart valve condition from which more than half of those diagnosed die within two years. Jesse beat those odds after a successful valve replacement. 

Read Jesse Aldrich 's story.

Susan Dickson exemplifies the legacy of patient care that defines Houston Methodist. Our health care professionals and support staff are known for their dedication to patient needs and comfort. The longstanding relationship between Houston Methodist health care providers and Susan helped her make the decision for bioprosthetic (nonmechanical) heart valve surgery.

Read Susan Dickson 's story.

Henry Ham found that both his work fixing trucks and his ordinary daily activities were increasingly more difficult. In 2009, he was diagnosed with coronary artery disease and was told little could be done, but he did not give up. He researched and found Houston Methodist, where doctors performed a minimally invasive coronary artery bypass graft surgery in February 2012. Henry is now back to the life he enjoys.

Read Henry Ham 's story.

Brian Hodder had difficulty breathing when he lay on his left side in bed and had a slight persistent cough. In June 2004, Brian discovered that his symptoms were not just minor annoyances; he was diagnosed with a heart tumor. 

Read Brian Hodder 's story.

Rose Joubert, an active 70-year-old, found she was not able to keep up with her busy schedule. After receiving a replacement heart valve in early 2012, she is back to cooking and singing.

Read Rose Joubert 's story.

Kurt Salziger has had a heart murmur for as long as he can remember, but it did not affect his daily life until his mitral valve started leaking. Kurt came to Houston Methodist and for minimally invasive robotic heart surgery.

Read Kurt Salziger 's story.

Mark Staudt ran marathons and thought his heart was healthy, until his run times declined to the point of him no longer being able to match his first marathon. He couldn't pinpoint what was causing him to slow down. A stress test revealed that he had atrial fibrillation. Physicians at Houston Methodist performed a catheter ablation procedure, and Mark is now running strong again.

Read Mark Staudt 's story.

Gilbert Swagger no longer had the stamina he once had. Diagnosed with aortic valve stenosis, his heart valve had become thick and calcified. An artificial valve was implanted using a catheter through an artery in his leg to replace the weak one.

Read Gilbert Swagger 's story.

J. Rob Walker, a World War II veteran, received a new valve at Houston Methodist after a previously asymptomatic heart murmur turned into something more serious. At 90 years old, Rob is doing the activities he enjoys again.

Read J. Rob Walker 's story.

Ronny Yon had experienced pain in his upper back and chest while carrying grocery bags to his car. The pain worsened, and his wife made an emergency appointment with his Houston Methodist-trained physician. Tests revealed a deadly acute aortic dissection; Ronny was on the next flight to Houston from Guatemala to the Acute Aortic Treatment Center to operate on his complex medical heart condition.

Read Ronny Yon 's story .

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Our physicians at Houston Methodist specialize in heart and vascular conditions at the following convenient locations.