Velaigam Doriasamy, 67, had his heart attack and angioplasty procedure on a Wednesday. By Sunday he was walking through grocery store aisles, looking at food labels and reading ingredient lists. “I never had to do that before,” he says. “I thought, ‘Oh my God, my life has changed."
A father of two and a retired rescue fire-fighter, Doriasamy had always been in good physical shape. Although he was a few pounds overweight, he was no fast-food junkie. “I looked like the picture of health,” he says. Yet one day in January 2018, while on the way back from the supermarket near his home in George Town, Malaysia, he felt extreme chest pain and was taken by ambulance to an ER.
After some preliminary tests were conducted, the doctors confirmed what Doriasamy had suspected all along. He was having a heart attack. Although a relatively mild one, nonetheless, this was cause for serious concern for Doriasamy and his family. “This was a close call, and I hope I don’t have to go through that again”, he said smiling.
Not willing to take a chance his family decided to get the best treatment that money could afford. They scoured the internet looking for viable treatment options, “we had heard so much about the quality of healthcare in India, hearing stories about people travelling to India for medical treatment and best hospital in India for angioplasty gave us a sense of hope. Three days post this traumatic event, family members were already communicating with Health Consultants from Vaidam. When asked about why they decided to go with Vaidam? Their simple reply was, “they just seemed very honest”.
Doriasamy and his family arrived in New Delhi on 15 Feb and were received by a Vaidam Representative who helped them make their way to Fortis Hospital, Chennai. En route, data from an electrocardiogram (EKG) was transmitted to the cardiology department, so when Doriasamy arrived, doctors were ready. The family was provided with a list of top 10 cardiac surgeons in India and they decided to go with Dr. E. Babu. He performed an angioplasty procedure, during which Dr. Babu guided a thin, flexible catheter through an artery in his wrist to his heart to access the blockage that caused the heart attack. He also received a stent to restore blood flow to his heart and keep the artery open.
Three days after the surgery, Doriasamy left the hospital relieved that the ordeal was finally over. Nevertheless, he still had to contend with the postoperative symptoms: "After the operation, walking just 10 yards left me exhausted. Even eating was tiring.” The surgery was a success; however, Doriasamy would now need to obtain in a cardiac rehabilitation programme to gain back his earlier strength. “Once I get back home I will see to it that my health returns back to normal”.
A week after their arrival in India, they made their way back to their home after a successful surgery. The big challenge was whether Doriasamy bring about considerable changes to his lifestyle to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.
A month post his Angioplasty procedure Doriasamy’s family members are ecstatic about the noticeable changes in his overall health. While Doriasamy says his pre-angioplasty diet wasn’t bad, he has revised his eating habits to help prevent another heart attack. He now eats more fish and chicken and less sugar, sodium, and red meat than he did before.
During a call with Vaidam’s Health Consultant he expressed his joy on a new lease of life, "I feel incredibly happy that I'm alive. Everyone else I've known who had a heart attack has died, but now I know that there can be life after a heart attack."