Adrienne and RJ Brandes
Gold Medal Team
RJ and Adrienne Brandes are grateful for top-level cardiac care
Fit and active, 77-year-old RJ Brandes had just completed his daily Peloton bike ride when he noticed his heart rate was at the top of his range. Since he’d averaged upwards of 19 miles an hour on his ride, he chalked it up to the vigorous workout.
“At first, I thought it was no big deal,” remembers RJ. “I had no pain, no symptoms and no concerns, except my heart was acting like I was running a marathon.”
When his heart rate had not slowed after 90 minutes, RJ went to urgent care and was directed to the emergency room at Providence Mission Hospital. Physicians determined RJ had a combination of issues — each needing to be addressed.
“I had a few clogged arteries and a third had ruptured,” he says. “Basically, I was due for my 100,000-mile tune-up!”
Extensive due diligence
RJ and his wife, Adrienne, began intensive research to determine the absolute best option. “This was the most important due diligence I’d ever do,” he shares. “We looked at everything —success rates, number of procedures, attention to detail. In the end, we made the decision based on who we trusted with my life: Providence Mission Hospital.”
“From the very beginning, they cared about my comfort as well as my husband’s,” Adrienne expressed. “We truly bonded in those moments.”
Although RJ joked he would be out of surgery in time for lunch, a complication led to an 11-hour procedure. However, he came through surgery and his subsequent cardiac rehab with flying colors.
“They gave me the kind of care only angels would give you,” he explained. “It’s a humbling experience not to be able to take care of yourself. It’s not something that someone like myself fancies. But they were extraordinary.”
Back on the Peloton
Today, he and Adrienne have nothing but praise and appreciation for his physician, Sevak Darbinian, M.D., cardiothoracic surgeon, and the cardiovascular team at Providence Mission Hospital.
Adrienne was so grateful for the experience that she joined the Providence Mission Hospital Foundation Board. “In addition to the outstanding care RJ received, everyone at the hospital was incredibly supportive during a traumatic time for our family,” says Adrienne. “Dr. Darbinian, the cardiovascular team and all the hospital staff we encountered were remarkable. I’m honored to serve on the board for what I consider to be a destination hospital for top-level care.”
RJ agrees, “I had the Olympics of operations, and Providence Mission Hospital was my gold medal team.”
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