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Heart Talk: A Way of Life

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The Importance of Research to the ACHD Patient by Melissa Hartman

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MSharpe_TN

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Read the latest entry to the HeartTalk blog by clicking here.

About the Author: 

Melissa Hartman is an ACHA Ambassador. In her words:

“You should not have stayed away so long! You need surgery, and I don’t want you to wait.” These were shocking words from my ACHD cardiologist. Like most adults, I had been living life without properly caring for my congenital heart defect, tetrology of Fallot. I was the lucky one who was the first TOF repair at Emory in Atlanta in 1972 at the age of four. With only a few interventions between four and 40, I figured I was set for life. When my cardiologist told me I needed another surgery, I was stunned. Once again, I was lucky. I was referred to a wonderful surgeon who was able to save my pulmonary valve and repair my right ventricular outflow tract. As I recovered and realized how truly fortunate I am, I decided I needed to help educate everyone about the importance of lifelong care with an adult congenital specialist.

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