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Swimmer maintains her pace with some help

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Gail Roper in the pool at the YWCA in downtown Minneapolis Tuesday afternoon during her workout.

[Star Tribune, December 16, 2009] Gail Roper was fearful of making a scene. Poised on the lip of a pool after swimming laps seven years ago, the former Olympic swimmer "knew something was wrong. It was like I was having an out-of-body experience. But it was scary."

She crawled out of the pool, rattled. A month later she experienced a second episode -- her doctor later said her heart was beating irregularly. He suggested a pacemaker.

"I'm an athlete," she said. "They're for sick people."

Dr. Charles Gornick, director of cardiac electrophysiology at the Minneapolis Heart Institute at Abbott Northwestern Hospital was interviewed for the story about the trends in devices for Baby Boomers. Read the entire story at startribune.com.

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