Patient Story

His Heart Was In the Right Place

Fabian Tasama was with his wife and two children at their Fairview home when he started having terrible joint pain. Then a cold feeling overcame his whole body. He says he was unable to move, and it was as if he “felt like a puppet.” Then came the intense, unrelenting chest pain. Tasama — like many people in their 40s — was not on guard for the symptoms of a heart attack that day. So, when the unusual pressure overtook him, he was just as confused as he was terrified for his life. Then he lost consciousness.

“I woke up inside an ambulance speeding to Englewood Health’s Emergency Room. I thought, why was my life spared just one week ago only to be taken from me now?” Tasama said.

He’d been admitted with COVID-19 and treated for one week before he was well enough to go home. His release from the hospital was ceremonious, as Tasama was the 500th COVID patient to be successfully treated at Englewood Health.

“It was as if I was a member of their family,” Tasama recalls of his experience as a COVID patient.

Despite how grateful Tasama was for the treatment he’d received at Englewood Health, he was certainly in no rush to go back. Tasama was particularly anxious to be at home with his wife, who was nearly due with their third child, a little boy the couple planned on naming Dante.

“All I could think about was whether I would live to see the birth of my son,” Tasama said.

The emergency room team phoned the on-call cardiologist, and, within minutes, Tasama was being wheeled in for his procedure.

It’s nerve-racking for anybody to be told that they are having a heart attack and that they need an emergency procedure – but Tasama stayed calm and eagerly accepted the course of treatment that was being recommended.

The placement of two stents in Tasama’s heart went exactly as planned and was a success.

Tasama spent a few days recovering in the hospital, and by the fifth day, had made another incredible recovery.

“Englewood Health saved my life twice, and I couldn’t be more thankful to the entire team, particularly Dr. Dennis Kelly for making sure I would make it home to see my son being born,” Tasama said.

Two months later, Tasama’s son was born, a little bundle with dimples and a full head of black hair. In that moment, the pain and the uncertainty of the past months melted away for the Tasama family.

“The other day, when my son Dante woke up from his nap, he pulled himself up from his crib and stretched his arms out to me with an amazing giggle. These are the best days of my life. Had I not gone to Englewood Health, I may have never met my son,” Tasama said.

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