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Dee Ann’s Story

Dee Ann Cleveringa’s experience is a story of strength … and success.

Dee Ann knew she had a family history of heart disease. She had lost grandparents and her father (age 48) and her brother (age 55) to heart disease. She had some vague symptoms herself: slight chest pain, some arm and back pain, and shortness of breath that she attributed to a bout with what she thought was the “flu” back in 2008. Dee Ann didn’t really think it was bad enough to go through all that “medical stuff” and she didn’t want to inconvenience her family. She wanted to be strong for them.

This all changed on March 5, 2015 when Dee Ann was emptying the dishwasher and broke out in a cold clammy sweat. She came to Orange City Area Health System and was checked out at our cardiovascular outreach clinic by cardiologist Dr. Wanner. It was determined she had two blocked arteries – one 99% blocked and the other 100% blocked – and needed open heart surgery to bypass these arteries.

It turns out that little bout with the flu seven years earlier was likely a heart attack.

After Dr. Verlyn Nykamp at Sanford Heart Hospital performed her surgery, Dee Ann recovered quickly with a little help from Shannon Beaty in our cardiac rehab center. Today Dee Ann is even stronger for her family. She is so grateful for the second chance she has at life and God’s plan and purpose for her.