Radio Personality Credits Memorial with Lifesaving Heart Care
Sean Lynch didn’t think anything was seriously wrong the afternoon of his massive heart attack. The 50-year-old local radio personality was setting up a pre-party at the Illinois State Fairgrounds for the band Foghat. He started to feel overheated, which seemed odd since the State Fair was enjoying cooler temperatures than usual.
“I was setting up the sound gear, which I’ve done a thousand times,” he said. “But I couldn’t catch my breath or cool down. Something just didn’t feel right. I thought I needed a few minutes in my car to lay down and catch my breath in the air conditioning.”
Fortunately for Sean, his station’s general manager, Charlie Ferguson, insisted on taking him to the Memorial Medical Center Emergency Department.
The last thing Sean remembers was the ED team rushing to seat him when he came through the door, asking questions and hooking him up to monitors. Springfield Clinic cardiologist Adeeb Ahmed, MD, was the physician on call with the designated Level 1 Southern Illinois Trauma Center, located at Memorial Medical Center.
Sean had 100 percent blockage of the right coronary artery, located opposite of the left anterior descending “widow-maker” artery. Three cardiac catheterizations, two stents, a couple days in intensive care and a relatively short recovery later, Sean appreciates the care he received that day and throughout his recovery.
Mitch Rogers, MBA, BSN, RN, administrator of Memorial Heart & Vascular Services, credits thriving partnerships as a key to patient care.
“Because of the partnerships we’ve established with Southern Illinois University and Springfield Clinic, patients should feel very confident about our unwavering commitment to providing the best care possible,” he said. “The continuum of care from admission to discharge to Cardiac Rehab–the whole system plays into that. For me, that’s the biggest picture of how we take care of our patients at Memorial.”
Sean is alive today because of that comprehensive approach.
“I’m here because of Memorial and their relationship with Dr. Ahmed,” he said. “Dr. Ahmed was really straightforward, very informative and extremely caring. The nurses were understanding…everyone kept saying ‘You’re so young!’”
At 50, Sean is young, and his risk factor came from genetics more than lifestyle. He ate healthy, exercised and had received a clean bill of health at a yearly physical in February including a spotless EKG (required for cataract surgery). However, his grandfather died at age 52 after a massive heart attack.
For Sean, who is always juggling a variety of professional projects, the heart attack gave his wife, Diane, and two grown children, Connor and Amanda, additional leverage to encourage him to delegate more.
As for Sean himself? He is grateful to be back on the airwaves doing what he loves to do.
“It was fixable,” he said. “It never hit me that this could be it. It scared the crap out of me, but I figured they would fix it. And they did.”
Prevention and Pace: Managing Your Heart Health
Wednesday, Feb. 28 | 6–7:30 p.m. | Memorial Center for Learning and Innovation
Join Sean as he moderates a conversation with cardiovascular specialists from Springfield Clinic and SIU about heart disease prevention, heart rhythm emergencies, heart valve disease and managing heart health. Light refreshments provided. Reserve your seat now.