Scott Maurer: Open-Heart Surgery

Within seven months of having quadruple bypass surgery at Allegiance Health, Scott was back on the field refereeing varsity football, and was able to referee the entire basketball season.

Scott Maurer is passionate about football and basketball. At 47, he was refereeing a high school basketball game when noticed a shortness of breath and pain in his left arm. After a series of medical tests, Scott found out he needed open-heart surgery. “I was scared to death,” Scott recalled. “I was worried how this major surgery would affect my physical strength and my ability to live the life I love.”

Within seven months of having quadruple bypass surgery at Allegiance Health, Scott was back on the field refereeing varsity football, and was able to referee the entire basketball season. This year he’ll have the honor of refereeing the state high school football tournament.

“The message I want to give other potential heart surgery patients is that you can come back strong,” Scott said. “Since my surgery, I’ve been working out at the Allegiance Wellness Center every morning at 5 a.m., and I have more energy than I ever had before.”

Throughout his experience at the Allegiance Health heart center, Scott and his wife, Wendy, were “impressed with the professional and personal level of care” they both received.  “There isn’t a finer bunch of people anywhere,” Scott said. “Everyone went out of their way to put us at ease, including Stanley who cleaned my room and brightened my day every morning.”

Scott and Wendy were also pleased with the attentiveness of the cardiovascular surgeons, Mahender Macha, MD, and Vincent Simonetti, MD. “Both surgeons came in to see me two or three times a day. And on the evening of my surgery, Dr. Macha was monitoring my vital signs every hour from his home.”

Scott attended the 2013 University of Michigan/Michigan State football game wearing a special U of M surgical scrub cap. “Dr. Simonetti stopped in to see me after my surgery, and I admired his cap.” Scott said. “He took it off,  threw it to me and said, ‘you earned this one.’ That gesture meant a lot to me.”

“As long as I live, I will tell people there is nothing to fear about having surgery at the Allegiance heart center. There’s absolutely no reason to go out of town when the best care is right here.”Scott Maurer, Open-Heart surgery patient

Overall, Scott’s Allegiance experience was “wonderful,” he said. “As long as I live, I will tell people there is nothing to fear about having surgery at the Allegiance heart center. There’s absolutely no reason to go out of town when the best care is right here.”

Now, as a participant in Allegiance Health’s Straight from the Heart mentorship program, Scott volunteers his time and support for patients facing open-heart surgery.“ Just before my own surgery, I had the good fortune of meeting Denny Kerwin, a heart-surgery ‘veteran.’” Scott said. “Denny’s support and encouragement was invaluable to me and inspired me to help others. Both of us have become patient mentors, and Wendy is hoping to mentor spouses of open-heart patients.”

Severe chest pain is not always present with a heart attack, especially for older adults, people with diabetes and women. They may experience sudden shortness of breath, coughing, dizziness, fatigue or weakness. Don’t take a chance. Call 9-1-1.