If you saw Vince and Christine Cavaleri taking one of their daily walks, you might never suspect the pair have survived serious cardiac events.
At 77, Christine is an active person who adheres to a healthy diet, drinks lots of water and does weekly water aerobics. She is also a heart attack survivor and has two stents in her coronary arteries.
Vince is 89, still works part time and also actively pursues his passion for photography. He suffers from valve disease and congestive heart failure and has had three pacemakers implanted over the last 18 years.
For the Cavaleri’s, their good health is a reflection of their personal commitment to their own well-being and to the dedicated care of Dr. Nicholas Cossa at Virginia Heart. “Dr. Cossa is always very pleasant and patient,” Christine said. “He always listens very carefully and we never, ever feel rushed,” Vince added.
So when Dr. Cossa told Vince it was time to have his second pacemaker replaced with a new bi-ventricular device that could significantly improve the way he was feeling, the Cavaleri’s took his advice. Although some patients Vince’s age might be afraid to undergo a procedure of that complexity, the Cavaleri’s trusted Dr. Cossa and believed he would not recommend any treatment if he didn’t believe it could benefit them.
And Dr. Cossa says he would not recommend a procedure if he did not believe the patient was a successful candidate. “Despite their ages, the Cavaleri’s are some of my easier patients,” Dr. Cossa said. “They really try to take good care of themselves and they are remarkably healthy despite their age and their cardiac histories.”
Thanks to the vigilant care of Dr. Cossa and their own efforts to stay healthy and fit, the Cavaleri's continue to stay busy, working, swimming and chasing after grandchildren. As Christine says, “You’ve got to be fit if you want to stay in the game.”