On a steamy, hot day last August, David Erickson, 52, was
headed for home. He and his son had just finished work at a landscaping job
site and stopped to buy water at a convenience store.
“I remember feeling like I had overexerted myself, just by
walking into that store,” said Erickson. Several minutes later, the chest pain
kicked in. Erickson told his son to step on it and drive to the nearest
When they arrived at Abbott Northwestern – WestHealth in
Plymouth, staff rushed out with a wheelchair and helped get him into the
building. By then, he was sweating so profusely that the monitor leads wouldn’t
Then it became a blur. Baby aspirin. Three shots of
morphine. An oxygen mask. The emergency room doctor leaning in close and saying
very calmly, “Mr. Erickson, you are having a heart attack.” And within 14
minutes, an ambulance transfer to Minneapolis Heart Institute® at Abbott
Fortunately for Erickson, he was at the hospital that set a national
standard for treating cardiovascular emergencies. Within 10 minutes of his arrival,
doctors were opening one blocked artery using angioplasty. But a second blocked
artery, a chronic total occlusion, could not be treated with traditional angioplasty. It required a specialized
procedure that was performed a month later. Again, Erickson was at the right
place -- Minneapolis Heart Institute® doctors are national leaders in treating
this type of blockage.
Erickson has made a full recovery, thanks to cardiac
rehabilitation and a renewed commitment to keeping himself healthy. “Actually,
I felt better almost immediately,” he recalled. “Now I feel like I’m back in my
30s -- I can go for a brisk walk or work out without feeling like I’m overdoing
He is grateful for the care he received, beginning at Abbott
Northwestern – WestHealth. “The WestHealth team got me to Abbott Northwestern
quickly – they really saved my life at that point. Then when I arrived at
Abbott Northwestern, everything there was ready to go. And I was very lucky
that they had the right doctors there who were also able to open the second
Minneapolis Heart Institute® at Abbott Northwestern
offers leading-edge care for any cardiovascular health need. Much of its
innovative work is supported by philanthropy, including that provided by the
Abbott Northwestern Hospital Foundation and its generous donors.
Help us enhance care for Abbott Northwestern patients by
making a gift to Cardiovascular Services today.
New mobile app helps doctors
treat heart emergencies
Minneapolis Heart Institute® at Abbott Northwestern has launched a mobile app to ensure that the latest protocols for treating any cardiovascular emergency are easily accessible to care providers and EMS professionals. The app was funded by Abbott Northwestern Hospital Foundation. Since it was launched in
October 2016, it has been downloaded more than 900 times from five different countries.