Carol Morrison was sitting in her dentist's office. Little did she realize her life was about to change.
"I didn't realize at the time I had a heart attack," said Morrison, who was 74 at the time.
The office staff called 911, and Morrison was transported to Broward Health Medical Center, where she would suffer a second heart attack later that night. Morrison was treated by Arnoux Blanchard, M.D., who specializes in cardiology and internal medicine with the Broward Health Physician Group.
“The heart attack was complicated,” Blanchard said. “It was a fairly large myocardial infraction. There was residual weakness of muscle. She had congestive heart failure.”
Blanchard recommended Morrison receive an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD). The ICD is a battery-powered device placed under the skin and wired to your heart that keeps track of your heart rate. The ICD will deliver an electric shock to restore a normal heartbeat if an abnormal heart rhythm is detected.
“She was willing to sit down, slow down, listen to the importance of what we were doing,” said Blanchard, “and eventually agreed.”
Since that time, Blanchard has become like family to the now 81-year-old Morrison.
“You, as a physician, are concerned about your patient’s well-being,” said Blanchard. “We developed a good patient-physician relationship and it was easier to guide her in this treatment because of it.”
Morrison has Blanchard’s cell phone number for emergencies and recently used it when she visited the hospital for what would turn out to be a minor infection.
“I can’t say enough positive things about that man,” said Morrison. “He is wonderful.”
The feeling is mutual. Blanchard fondly recalls that every year she brings him Haitian patties for his birthday.
“She is an incredible woman,” Blanchard said. “She is very active and continues to do very well.”