John Gillis was always a healthy and active man, with a busy career that included support of his alma mater, Maine Maritime Academy. In 2016, after walking the hills surrounding the Academy during a homecoming weekend visit with his wife Deb, John began to feel a subtle burning in his chest that didn’t seem normal to him. A few weeks later at the end of his annual physical, provider Dr. William L. Medd asked John if he had any concerns or questions. John reported the burning sensation and Dr. Medd perceived that more investigation was necessary.
That careful assessment paid off, as it was determined that John was experiencing significant cardiac blockage that had to that point been undetectable. He was immediately referred to Cardio-Thoracic surgeons at Maine Medical Center, who discovered that John’s heart issues were significant, including an aortic valve anomaly from birth that combined with six blocked arteries required valve replacement and bypass surgery. Referred to as a CABG, (pronounced cabbage) this extensive Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery was performed to restore his heart to normal status.
Today, John is feeling great and has resumed his favorite activities like taking care of their historical South Paris property and turning out beautiful work in his home-based woodworking studio. “The care we received was fantastic, said John, “I am grateful for the ongoing monitoring and care of Dr. Medd and this experience has highlighted for me how important it is to communicate with your health care provider.”