Dubai: Chef with fatal heart condition undergoes 8-hour life-saving procedure

He was at work when he felt a severe pain in his chest

By SM Ayaz Zakir

Published: Thu 4 Aug 2022, 2:08 PM

A 32-year-old Serbian chef with a heart condition underwent an 8 hour long life-saving procedure at a private hospital.

Mark Bolivar, a Dubai resident for 7 years, was diagnosed with a tear in his aorta and a bulging aneurysm that was about to rupture.

Bolivar, a chef in a renowned hotel in Dubai, was at work when he felt a severe pain in his chest running to his neck and back. His colleagues rushed him to Aster Hospital, Qusais. He was in such a critical state that each passing hour reduced his chance of survival by two per cent.

Recalling the incident, Bolivar said: "I was at work. It was a hectic day. Suddenly, I felt severe pain in my chest that spread to my neck and the back. I struggled to breathe as well. Everything happened so quickly that I didn't understand what was happening to me. Seeing me struggling, my colleagues took me to the hospital."

Irregular heartbeat

At the hospital, the doctor found Bolivar had an irregular heartbeat and advised him to consult a cardiologist. "He told me that it might be due to stress at work. I consulted a cardiologist and ran a series of tests, including an MRI and other cardiac-related tests," said Bolivar.

Once the test results came, the doctor explained that his condition was critical. According to the doctor, Bolivar had to undergo heart bypass surgery immediately.

The doctor referred Bolivar to Dr Pradeep Nambiar, consultant cardiac surgeon at Aster Hospital, Qusais, who is a specialist in performing heart bypass surgery through the laparoscopic method.

The doctors explained the procedure and how critical it is. “Type A dissection is a high-mortality condition. In his case, each passing hour reduced his chance of survival by two percent. So, all we had was 48 hours to save Bolivar. I communicated the risk and the need for an urgent medical intervention, and he agreed to undergo the procedure," said Dr Nambiar.

"We repaired the tear in the aorta and cleared the blocks. We also managed to repair the damaged heart valve. The procedure was a success, and Mark presently has its own valve. He responded well to the treatment, and as we resorted to a minimally invasive approach, Bolivar got discharged from the hospital on day five post the surgery," explained the doctor.

New lease on life

A husband and a father to a daughter, Bolivar said it is a second life for him. "I have come back from the jaws of death. My family and I are grateful to Dr Nambiar and the clinical team at Aster Hospital for their exceptional care and treatment. Dr Nambiar has given me a new lease of life," said Bolivar.

Dr Nambiar added that he is happy for Bolivar and his family. "It is always heartening to see your patient recover. When it comes to cases like that of Bolivar, it is often a success to be cherished for a lifetime."


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