Beebe Cardiac Patient Story
Frank Mahoney considers himself to be a lucky person. He is a musician and has been a band director and school music teacher much of his life. He grew up in Philadelphia and taught music in Pennsylvania and in Sussex County’s Indian River School District.
“The advantage of being a band director is that you meet so many kids over the years,” says Mr. Mahoney now 69 years of age. “I’ve even had the opportunity to teach the children of my former students.”
Mr. Mahoney has also enjoyed arranging music for high school and college bands, adding his own unique touches to optimize the young people’s performances. Now retired in Millsboro, he enjoys performing with various bands and orchestras.
Mr. Mahoney also feels extremely fortunate that he is alive today, thanks to his wife, Jane, his doctors and an excellent cardiac surgeon. Last June, as he was preparing for engagements during the local tourist season, he noticed that he felt strangely.
“I just didn’t feel right. I didn’t have pain, exactly, but something similar to a frozen feeling in the back of my throat. Only it wasn’t a cold day, it was late June.”
Mr. Mahoney said he also noticed strange sensations in his shoulders. He told his wife Jane and she insisted that he go to the doctor.
“I went to see our family physician, Dr. Jerry Groll, and he sent me to Lewes cardiologist Dr. Alberto Rosa and he ordered a stress test,” Mr. Mahoney recalled. Dr. Rosa then performed a diagnostic cardiac catheterization to see if the arteries in Mr. Mahoney’s heart were blocked. At that point, Dr. Rosa said surgery was necessary and began the process to have it scheduled.
Mr. Mahoney, not realizing the seriousness of the situation, told Dr. Rosa that he had a number of musical engagements around July 4th and that he would like to reschedule the surgery for several weeks later, but Dr. Rosa would not hear of it.
The following day M. L. Ray Kuretu, MD, performed a quintuple coronary artery bypass graft surgical procedure.
“My wife and I were extremely pleased with the care provided by Dr. Kuretu, the cardiac physician assistants and the entire Open Heart Unit at Beebe,” he says. “I got to spend some time with Dr. Kuretu. He has an amazing resume and quite a background.”
Dr. Kuretu of the Cardiac Surgery Program at Beebe Medical Center in affiliation with Christiana Care Health System, is a former medical director of cardiothoracic surgery at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital in Darby, Pa. He also was a surgeon at Hahnemann University/Drexel University College of Medicine, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery near Philadelphia.
Mr. Mahoney says that these days he feels like his old self. He attended and graduated from Beebe Medical Center’s Cardiac Rehab program and is following doctors’ orders. He and his wife have set up an exercise area in their home and they workout regularly together. Following the surgery in late June, he resumed his musical activities in September.
“I feel great.”