Patient Stories

Congenital heart patient finds care for a lifetime

AprilCooper-web.jpg Imagine being told your baby has a half-dollar-size hole in her heart. That’s exactly what David and Judy Hall were told about their daughter, April.

April Cooper, of Manito, Illinois, was born in Paducah, Kentucky, on July 16, 1981. She was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect called atrial septal defect (ASD) – a condition where a hole lies in the septum that divides the upper chambers of the heart. Though ASD is one of the most common congenital heart defects, the size of April’s hole was large.

Read More


Long heart journey encourages others to keep faith

christineBathe.JPG At 30 years old, Christine Bathe began experiencing severe upper back pain - never giving a thought about it being a symptom of a heart condition. But after getting an echocardiogram that came back abnormal, she would soon realize her heart journey was only just beginning.

Read More



Young stroke survivor advocates for a stress-free life

tiffany-hinthorne.jpg It’s a known fact that stress isn’t a good thing. It can cause many side effects, like frequent headaches, trouble sleeping or changes in someone’s mood. But did you know it can cause more serious problems, too, like a stroke?

Tiffany Hinthorne, of El Paso, Illinois, found that out the hard way when she started experiencing stroke symptoms at the young age of 35.

Read More


Knowing family history can help with heart disease

Rebecca-Hansen.jpg Rebecca Hansen of Dunlap, Illinois, did everything right to stay heart healthy. She worked out five times a week, ate a nutritious diet and went to regular checkups with her doctor.

With a strong family history of heart disease, she knew she was still susceptible to heart-related conditions – a fact she never wanted to come true.

But around 2 a.m. on February 4, 2014, Rebecca had to face the harsh reality that genetics don’t exactly play fair.

Read More


Heart attack survivor shatters all stereotypes

Julie Bowald is not your typical heart attack survivor. Active, health-conscious and an overachiever, the vibrant mother of two shatters all stereotypes.

Always on the go, Julie regularly worked long hours to build her successful real estate business while raising two teenage daughters with her husband Robert. Then, in May 2016, Julie’s world changed forever.

Read More


New Emergency Center Saves Streator Native’s Life


Carol Biroschik, of Streator, woke up with pain in her neck, jaw and down both her sides. What she thought were minor aches and pains turned out to be something much more dangerous.

Read More


Student saved by quick rescue, defibrillator surgery at OSF


Jordan Tribbet was excited to start his first year of higher education as a freshman at Carl Sandburg College in Galesburg, Illinois, where he planned to study project management and serve as a guard on the school’s basketball team.

The graduate of Lanphier High School in Springfield was dropped off in his new apartment by his parents on Aug. 19. But just five days later, his course was changed.

Read More


OSF Heart Surgery Patient Turns Volunteer


Ken Masuda of Chenoa, Ill., was a healthy 74-year-old who exercised every day, and ran many Hawaii marathons between his early forties and mid-sixties. When he experienced mild chest pain, he never dreamed it was a symptom of a bigger issue.

Read More


Revolutionary heart procedure gets Central Illinois man back on the golf course



Gene Shurtz was the second central Illinois resident to undergo the innovative TAVR procedure at OSF HealthCare. Suffering from aortic stenosis, the TAVR procedure, allowed Gene to see a day he never thought possible.

Read More