Vince Boggia moved to the Kansas City area in October 2007 from Huntsville, Ala., and considers his first experience at Overland Park Regional Medical Center (OPRMC) as one of an instant and collaborative partnership.
“I was educated, informed and treated as an equal in the action plan my doctor presented,” says Vince.
Vince has a family history of heart disease. His father succumbed to a heart attack at 57 years old, Vince’s exact age when he visited Gregory Chambon, MD, his physician at College Park Family Care Center in Overland Park in February 2009. “It was my annual physical,” says Vince. “I’m a stickler for preventative medicine.”
Dr. Chambon scheduled Vince, a manufacturer’s representative for sophisticated electronic testing and measurement devices, at OPRMC for a nuclear stress test. The procedure, similar to a regular stress test, measures blood flow to the heart muscle at rest and during stress and provides images of the heart as well as a measure of the heart’s electrical activity.
“The bad news is I failed the test and was suddenly a cardiac patient,” says Vince. “The good news is the doctors caught the situation before an irreversible health crisis occurred.”
Vince was then referred to Richard Thompson, MD, a cardiologist at OPRMC. Following a cardiac MRI ordered for a more definitive look at his heart, Vince and his wife Karen conferred with Dr. Thompson about a small blockage discovered on a descending artery. “We were so impressed with the doctor when he said I had a blockage,” says Vince. “He presented himself in a straightforward manner and talked to us in terms we could understand. You knew it was important to Dr. Thompson to treat us like informed consumers.”
Karen agrees with Vince’s assessment of Dr. Thompson. “I like to be with Vince in doctors’ appointments so nothing is lost in the translation,” she explains. “It helps both of us process information and make decisions. It was almost like Heart 101 for us.”
Since Vince was symptomless when he was diagnosed, Dr. Thompson explained the benefits of various treatment options: a heart stent, angioplasty surgery and a medication protocol. “Karen and I chose the medication route,” says Vince. “I take a pill now for regulating my heartbeat, a blood pressure medication, an anti-clotting drug, eat a sensible diet and perform light exercise,” says Vince. “I’ve lost a few pounds and feel great.”
As newcomers to Overland Park the Boggias were unfamiliar with the quality of healthcare available from area hospitals. They agree the appointments and encounters they had not only with Dr. Thompson but other staff at OPRMC were streamlined, professional and friendly. “There was a palpable feeling of concern for us,” says Karen.
Vince believes Dr. Thompson’s conversational nature, understanding attitude and commitment to his patient’s personal well-being has helped him in a determined quest to stay heart healthy. “Dr. Thompson’s approach made me walk away from the first appointment and say, ‘Okay, this is for real and I’m motivated to take action,’” says Vince.
As new residents unfamiliar with medical services available in their new city, the Boggias say they feel fortunate to have connected with OPRMC and Dr. Thompson.
“It’s essential to have faith in your health practitioners,” says Vince. “And Karen and I do.”