When Edward first saw a physician about a recurring pain in his abdomen, he was referred to Temple to receive care for a hernia. Dealing with several personal issues at the time, he delayed seeking treatment as he tried to prioritize other life circumstances demanding his attention. His symptoms worsened and, one day, Edward experienced an unusual shortness of breath as he climbed steps to take out the trash. He felt a sharp pain emerge in his chest and shoot down his left arm. He thought he was having a heart attack and shouted for someone to call an ambulance.
“I remember getting taken out of the ambulance at Temple and being wheeled into the ER,” says Edward. “The next thing I knew, I was awake in an intensive care unit and my brother, sister, aunt and pastor were all there.” Edward had suffered three cardiac arrests due to a massive pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in the lungs).
When faced with Edward’s sudden and life-threatening medical issues, the Temple Lung Center’s Pulmonary Embolism Response Team (PERT) worked quickly to provide timely and effective care. Pulmonologists, emergency medicine physicians, cardiologists, interventional radiologists, cardiac surgeons, hematologist, hospitalists and internal medicine residents collaborated to make complex medical decisions as a unified team.