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Kimberly Key was scheduled for a hysterectomy at OSF HealthCare Heart of Mary Medical Center in the last week of December 2019. However, a preoperative electrocardiogram (EKG) returned an abnormal result that threatened to delay the surgery. The surgery couldn’t proceed without clearance from a cardiologist.

Kimberly, who lives in Brocton, Illinois, was scared not only of having to delay her surgery and  changing locations for the procedure, she was also concerned about what the EKG result could mean for her health. At 54 years old, she was already two years older than her father had been when he died from a heart condition.

Kimberly wanted her surgery performed at OSF Heart of Mary and she wanted to know if she needed to worry about her heart health. She needed answers, and she needed them quickly.

Facing an urgent situation

Kimberly, an OSF HealthCare Mission Partner, turned to the OSF HealthCare Cardiovascular Institute.

“I had to see a cardiologist for clearance. The EKG results could’ve been due to an issue with my heart,” she said. “I didn’t want to delay my surgery and there could have been something more serious with my heart. My father died at 52 of a heart issue, so I wanted to make sure I hadn’t had a heart attack.”

Kimberly got in touch with Tammy Walsh, a physician office supervisor for OSF Cardiovascular Institute in Urbana. Tammy told Kimberly the OSF cardiologists were full, too, but Tammy would call her back.

“Within minutes Tammy called me back to tell me Dr. Reddy was leaving for vacation but wanted to see me today,” Kimberly said.

Exceeding expectations

Aravind Reddy, MD, a cardiologist for OSF Cardiovascular Institute in Urbana, was all set for an overseas vacation, but when he heard about Kimberly’s situation, he quickly agreed to stay late that day.

Dr. Aravind Reddy, MD

Dr. Aravind Reddy

He examined Kimberly, got the test she needed scheduled, and  within a few days, everything was done and Kimberly was cleared for surgery, which went off without a hitch on December 27 as scheduled.

“They’re both amazing,” Kimberly said of Tammy and Dr. Reddy. “They definitely focus on patient care and want to do what’s best for the patient. He was about to leave the country and he stayed over late just to see me. Tammy is so kind and great to work with. If she doesn’t know an answer to something, she’ll find it and get it for you.”

Dr. Reddy, however, doesn’t feel like he did anything special. He just did what he felt was right by prioritizing the needs of a patient.

“I figured if we could help, then why not?” Dr. Reddy said. “I could take care of her, so I stayed back a little bit.”

He said the practice has expanded its roster of cardiologists since then to help make sure Champaign-Urbana area OSF Cardiovascular Institute locations can provide same-day appointments for asymptomatic patients with urgent needs.

If you’re looking for expert heart care in the Champaign-Urbana area without the long wait times for an appointment, call OSF Cardiovascular Institute.

Last Updated: July 13, 2020

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About Author: Ken Harris

Ken Harris is the proudest father and was a writing coordinator for the Marketing & Communications division of OSF HealthCare.

He has a bachelor's in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and worked as a daily newspaper reporter for four years before leaving the field and eventually finding his way to OSF HealthCare.

In his free time, Ken likes reading, fly fishing, hanging out with his dog and generally pestering his lovely, patient wife.

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Categories: Heart Health, Patient Stories