This site is a resource for open heart surgery. It is a showcase for those special doctors who hold our lives in their hands and realize that their job extends far beyond the operating and treatment rooms. These are the doctors who spoke with us, not down to us; the ones who never made us feel that their time was limited, and never hid behind their ivy league degrees or credentials. It is a forum for those patients frightened with a new diagnosis, and for those in recovery who have an inextinguishable desire to live life to it's fullest, whether that may be conquering new physical goals, taking on a new hobby, spending more time with family, or anything else that was ever thought about but not done. This is a tribute to all of the nurses, caregivers, family members, and anyone else making a profound difference. You are all Heartosauruses.
In April of 2009 I was diagnosed with an ascending aortic aneurysm, the same condition that killed the actor John Ritter. I was 37 years old and otherwise in perfect health. I was lean, athletic, and in better shape than most people half my age. I never would have thought in a million years that I would soon be laying on an operating table, cut open like a rack of lamb with a stranger holding pieces of my beating heart and soul in his hands; while my wife and two young children pondered the uncertainties of life. I survived thanks to Doctors Mark Singer and Kenneth Walsh who found and diagnosed the aneurysm, and to Dr. Allan Stewart, the best heart surgeon in the country. A year later I ran in the 2010 NYC Marathon (my first ever) with my wife, and my surgeon. Doing this on the one year anniversary of my open heart surgery was my way of kicking sand in the face of aortic disease, and helping increase awareness to prevent deaths like that of John Ritter. I published a book about my experience called "Barefoot in November".
In these pages you will find a wealth of inspiring, truthful, raw, and sometimes intimate information surrounding open heart surgery. "Marathons" come in many forms, and many of the contributors have their own to speak of.