TAVR a life-changing experience for Garden City grandmother
Sam Hanes uses two words over and over again when talking about his mother’s recent heart surgery and the care she received at Via Christi Hospital St. Francis — “amazing” and “awesome.”
“They saved my mother’s life and they enhanced the quality of her life,” says Sam, who brought his 79-year-old mother to Wichita from Garden City on Nov. 20 for her 30-day check-up following a transcatheter aortic valve replacement, or TAVR, procedure performed in Via Christi’s hybrid OR.
Lennis “Jene” Hanes was transferred to Via Christi in August with heart rhythm issues as well as severe aortic stenosis, causing her to decompensate rapidly and go into cardiogenic shock.
She was intubated and given multiple supporting IV medicines to keep her alive.
After lengthy discussions with the family about Jene's limited options, Bassem Chehab, MD, medical director of Via Christi’s structural heart program, performed a balloon aortic valvuloplasty. This served as a temporary fix until the Heart Valve Clinic team could determine whether Jene would be a good candidate for the high-tech, minimally invasive TAVR procedure.
Jene later was extubated, weaned off supporting IV medicines and was discharged from the hospital to a skilled nursing facility. She went home in late September. After further evaluation by the team in early October, Jene was found to be a good candidate for a transfemoral TAVR, which was performed on Oct. 17 by Drs. Chehab, Brett Grizzell, Sanjay Khicha, Richard Steckley and David Havey.
Within six hours of her procedure, she was up in a chair and by the following morning was walking in the halls. She returned to her Garden City home four days after her surgery and since that time, says Sam, "it's been amazing what my mother has been able to do."
Says Jene, who recently took a trip to see family in Amarillo, Texas, and is looking forward to spending time with her five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren: "It really changed my life."
It’s a sentiment echoed by her son.
“God bless, we came here to St. Francis, where everything just fell into place,” says Sam, adding that everyone they've come in contact with at Via Christi has just been "awesome."