Don’t bet against Dan Howard.
When he was admitted to the cardiac intensive care unit at Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)–Cedar Crest on Jan. 9 with severe heart failure, the odds were about 1,000-to-1 against him going home.
His weakened heart wasn’t pumping enough blood to his vital organs, including his kidneys, and the situation was grim.
The heart team at Lehigh Valley Heart and Vascular Institute went to work, using a catheter to travel through one of Howard’s arteries and install an Impella heart pump, the world’s smallest, to help his heart pump and, more importantly, allow his body to recover for what lay ahead. “Our first goal was to preserve organ function,”cardiologist Nael Hawwa, MD, says.