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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

February Athelete of the Month

I came across February's Athlete of the Month by chance...

I read KAITLIN HAYWOOD's story as it was posted on the STOPTHECLOT Facebook page.

Please read on below the article I read and once more BE INSPIRED to enjoy life as it comes because we simply have no control as to what the next day will bring... (You can also read the article directly HERE).

"Twenty-year old Kaitlin Haywood, a junior at Southeast Missouri State University, was walking across campus last June when she started feeling ill. She made it inside Parker Hall, where she coaches a children's competitive gymnastics team, before passing out.
University staff called 911 and Kaitlin was rushed to the Emergency Department at Southeast Hospital. The ER physician, suspecting she may have a potentially fatal blood clot, ordered a CAT scan. Kaitlin was admitted to the Hospital and placed in ICU. Test results determined she had pulmonary emboli -- blood clots in the lungs. "I had multiple, massive blood clots," Kaitlin recalls.

Her condition deteriorated rapidly, according to Mark Dalton, DO, a Southeast adult hospitalist. "Kaitlin had a fast heart rate, and her blood pressure and oxygen levels began to drop. An echocardiogram report showed the right side of her heart was failing and she needed urgent treatment," Dr. Dalton says.

David A. Law, MD, of Cardiovascular Consultants and the Southeast Hospital Medical Staff, performed catheter-directed thrombolysis, a minimally invasive procedure which likely saved Kaitlin's life. "Before this treatment was available, we usually had to perform surgery," Dr. Law says. "This approach allows us to deliver clot-dissolving medication directly to the clot."

Kaitlin's condition improved, and within 48 hours her vital signs were normal. James C. Mosley III, MD, of Southeast Hematology/Oncology, ultimately found the pulmonary emboli were caused by Antiphopholipid Antibody Syndrome -- a rare autoimmune disorder that carries an increased risk of blood clots. "The treatment is long-term, including lifelong, use of anticoagulants (blood-thinners) to reduce the risk of recurrent potentially life-threatening clotting complications," Dr. Mosley says.

Kaitlin says the anxiety of initially not knowing what caused the blood clots and later the realization that she would be on medication the rest of her life were overwhelming. But she adds that the doctors and Hospital staff kept her informed and made her feel comfortable.

An exercise science major, Kaitlin was a competitive gymnast from ages 6 to 18. Kaitlin says that although she can no longer physically do gymnastics because of the risk of internal bleeding, she enjoys working with kids and plans to continue coaching. "I like passing my knowledge on," she says."

To me is very important to read that the doctors who took care of Kaitlin suspected that a blood clot was causing the issue and then tailored their treatment to save her life. Any hesitation from the doctors would have been tragic in this case. So, CONGRATULATIONS to all the doctors and staff who truly were able to identify the situation quickly and resolved it with a happy ending.

She may not be competing any more in gymnastics but she is involved in what she truly loves which is another example of individuals thriving even after they suffered from a clotting incident.

Get inspired!

Thanks for reading,

The Clot Buster

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My 60th Triathlon Finish !!!

My 60th Triathlon Finish !!!
First Time ever My Son got to cross the finish line with me. Without a doubt a Wonderful Experience