Second Chances Happen Here
Saugus firefighter Jeff Moses thought his discomfort was the result of pushing his body too hard. Melrose-Wakefield Hospital Emergency Department staff found he was dangerously close to a heart attack.
Jeff Moses has responded to countless medical emergencies during his 37 years with the Saugus Fire Department, but recently he was the one who needed help.
Moses, 60, felt short of breath at a fire. He was going to take oxygen and get back to work, but paramedics on the scene immediately recognized the need to send him to the emergency department at Melrose-Wakefield Hospital. Within minutes of his arrival, staff were certain Moses was experiencing a cardiac episode and ordered a stress test and soon after a cardiac catheterization. One of his arteries was 95 percent blocked, and the team placed a stent immediately. The procedure was performed in the hospital’s state-of-the-art Cardiac & Endovascular Center, the only one of its kind in the region.
“I had the A team,” Moses said of his cardiologists at Hallmark Health: Salil Midha, MD; Bruce Watrous, MD; and Carl Turissini, MD. “They’re all well regarded.
They took great care of me.”
Moses felt relief almost immediately. He now realizes that he experienced shortness of breath on and off since a bad fire in 2008 but always attributed the feeling to exertion or getting older. It wasn’t until he felt so good that he realized how bad he had felt.
“I probably should have been checked before,” said Moses. “The doctors said I wasn’t far from a heart attack that I probably wouldn’t have recovered from. I’m very fortunate.”
Moses now attends Cardiac Rehabilitation at Melrose-Wakefield Hospital three times a week. The comprehensive program is certified by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation.
Moses enjoys the exercise, patient education and getting to know his fellow rehabbers. They are monitored closely while they exercise but also have fun. Each patient gets to pick the music for the session; his choice is country.
“It’s a lot of fun,” Moses said. “It’s not like going to the gym – you talk, you joke. It’s like a little therapy session.”
Moses now eats a healthier diet and takes regular walks with his wife, Marianne. He’s committed to maintaining these changes so he can keep up with their growing family, which already includes four grandchildren!
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