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Juan Oyarzun, MD – Role Model for Excellence

05 Feb 2017

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Dr. Oyarzun starts the day off with a nice greeting and smile to staff. Both staff and patients find communicating with him easy and effective. I had a patient who had spent several days at home, denying that he was having a heart attack. He had no history of cardiac issues, but was a 1.5 pack-a-day smoker and regular marijuana-user. He had all the classic signs of a heart attack. When he finally arrived at the emergency department, the staff did an EKG. It showed anterior and inferior changes. The patient was rushed to the angiography department. The angiogram showed multi-vessel disease, too extensive to fix with stents, etc. The cardiovascular surgery team was consulted and an intra-aortic balloon pump was placed. The patient was then sent to CVCU. An echocardiogram showed that the heart was weak and not pumping efficiently. The initial CV surgeon felt it was safe to wait several days to let the patient’s myocardial infarction complete and stabilize. Over the weekend, as I took care of this patient, he had another episode of chest pain but no further EKG changes, following orders to check troponin levels and monitor closely. The initial results of the troponin levels were trending down, as to be expected, but by morning the troponin results came back elevated, indicating his heart may still be infarcting. Dr. Oyarzun decided to take the patient to open heart surgery to revascularize his heart before further damage could be done. The patient was extubated the next morning and intra-aortic balloon pump weaned off and removed. The patient had a normal post-operative recovery. His ejection fraction improved. I feel that Dr. Oyarzun saved this patient from further damage from his myocardial infarction.This is an example of how awesome Dr. Oyarzun is to work with. He listens to the nursing staff and makes thoughtful decisions. Thank you Dr. Oyarzun for listening and doing what is right for the patients in CVCU!