Winning the fight against a mysterious bacteria
When Valley resident Cecil Frazier went to the movies one evening with his wife, Margaret, he expected to be entertained. Instead, he found himself shaking uncontrollably as his began what would ultimately become a fight for his life.
Rather than home, Cecil’s next stop was the emergency room at Scottsdale Healthcare Thompson Peak Hospital. There, the 81-year-old experienced fever, low oxygen levels and nausea. Testing revealed a serious bacterial infection that had actually caused a hole in the mitral valve of Cecil’s heart.
Cecil was transferred to Scottsdale Healthcare Shea Medical Center, where expert physicians and nurses helped get the infection under control so cardiac surgeon Kenneth Ashton, MD could operate. And operate he did.
Dr. Ashton not only replaced Cecil’s damaged mitral valve but also his infected aortic valve, and performed a double coronary bypass.
With such extensive surgery, the road to recovery was long. In fact, Cecil was hospitalized four months including 30 days in the cardiac intensive care unit and underwent Scottsdale Healthcare’s beneficial cardiac rehabilitation program. But through it all, Cecil and Margaret were confident that brighter, healthier days were ahead.
“Dr. Ashton was very caring. He told me he wouldn’t do the surgery if he didn’t feel confident that Cecil was strong enough to get through it,” says Margaret.
“Everyone from the physicians and nurses at Thompson Peak to the continuum of quality care at Shea was phenomenal,” she says, understandably tearing up when she thinks how close she came to losing her husband of 33 years.”
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