$99 VERY Well-Spent

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Vascular Institute Patient Charles Simmons and his wife.Vascular disease can affect more than the heart and brain, it can lead to a myriad of other conditions including peripheral vascular disease and abdominal aortic aneurysm. Knowing this, Charles Simmons of Franklin decided that it would be a good idea to make an appointment for a Triple V Screening offered by Columbia St. Mary’s. “My wife works as a payment specialist at Columbia St. Mary’s, and we thought it was a good deal for such a low cost,” said Charles.

The screening is only $99 and includes carotid artery imaging of the neck to assess stroke risk, abdominal aorta imaging to detect aneurysm, and an ankle brachial index to check for peripheral arterial disease of the legs. The screening is recommended for those aged 55 and older with risk factors such as high cholesterol, smoking, diabetes, hypertension, or a family history of cardiovascular disease. Charles described the screening as, “Very quick, easy, and comfortable. It only took between 45 minutes to an hour.”

The screening revealed that Charles had an aneurysm in his abdominal aorta. An abdominal aortic aneurysm occurs when the large blood vessel that supplies blood to the abdomen, pelvis, and legs becomes abnormally large or balloons outward. Because these aneurysms have no outward symptoms, Charles was very surprised by the finding. He made an appointment at the Columbia St. Mary’s Vascular Institute and was seen within a few days of the screening. The coordinator of the Vascular Institute called Charles’ primary care physician and was seen that same day. Within a few days of the screening, Charles had a visit at the Columbia St. Mary’s Vascular Institute.

Dr. Craig Siverhus of the Vascular Institute ordered a CT scan of Charles’ abdomen which confirmed the results of the Triple V Screening. Charles was immediately scheduled for abdominal aortic aneurysm surgery and spent about five days in the hospital recovering. “Dr. Siverhus was extremely professional and provided great care,” he said. ”The recovery took a while and was a process, but the pain wasn’t too severe.”

Charles has made a complete recovery and is now in good health. He realizes that the $99 he spent for the Triple V Screening quite possibly may have saved his life. “I’m glad that I went to the Triple V Screening and I recommend others to do the same,” Charles said.

Columbia St. Mary’s offers Triple V screenings every few months. When screenings are scheduled, they are announced on the home page of the Columbia St. Mary’s website – www.Columbia-StMarys.org. Please check our site regularly for upcoming screenings.


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