Stacey’s story

It was early on August 13th, 2003 when our pagers went off. We knew someone needed our help. We had only begun cardiac surgery at St. Mary’s a few weeks earlier and this was our first emergency case. We could never have imagined it would be a young and vibrant woman.

Stacey was 30 years old with a newborn baby and a two year-old son at home. She awoke in the night with a crushing feeling in her chest. By early morning, one of her coronary arteries had ruptured and she underwent emergency coronary artery by-pass surgery. The next day, she would need another open heart surgery in order to survive. Who says heart disease doesn’t affect women?

Within hours, Stacey became known as the “young mom” around the hospital. We were all pulling for her, and in retrospect, because so many of us are mothers too, we just knew that she had to live. When she pulled through, Stacey became our miracle. We all knew the story could have turned out differently if the new cardiac program at St. Mary’s wasn’t here to help. Stacey would not have made it to Toronto, London, or Hamilton that morning.

Stacey’s condition was rare but we know that heart disease is the leading cause of death among women in this community and yet, so few women heed the warnings. In fact, in 45% of the cases, the first sign of heart disease a woman has, is a fatal heart attack.

Within hours, Stacey became known as the “young mom” around the hospital. We were all pulling for her, and in retrospect, because so many of us are mothers too, we just knew that she had to live. When she pulled through, Stacey became our miracle. We all knew the story could have turned out differently if the new cardiac program at St. Mary’s wasn’t here to help. Stacey would not have made it to Toronto, London, or Hamilton that morning.

Four years have passed and the St. Mary’s Regional Cardiac Care Centre is the highest ranked program of its kind in Ontario and each day, we’re saving lives and healing hearts. And this past September, Stacey walked her youngest son to Kindergarten.

All of this has been possible because of people like you – people who have invested in St. Mary’s. A donation to our cardiac centre ensures that we’ll be ready the next time our pagers go off.

Stacey’s scrub nurses:

Tara McBride
Registered Nurse – Cardiac Surgery
St. Mary’s Regional Cardiac Care Centre

Patricia Futher
Registered Nurse First Assistant,
St. Mary’s Regional Cardiac Care Centre

AnneMarie Scott
Registered Nurse,
St. Mary’s Regional Cardiac Care Centre