Taylor Mayad – Guest Contributor
Feb 16 @ 4:03 pm
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Courtesy of WellMed

Thirty-five-year-old Drew Rosiles was very busy. Spending time with his fiancée and traveling extensively for work left little time to worry about this health, so when he started experiencing some troubling symptoms, he reasoned them away.

"For two weeks, I had tunnel vision, tingling sensations and occasional chest pain," Drew recalled. He attributed it to fatigue. Driving home one day, the symptoms were so severe he worried he was endangering others by being on the road, so he pulled over and decided to schedule an appointment to see his primary care physician, Dr. Anis Ansari.

At the doctor visit, Simm Kapkeo, one of the certified medical assistants (CMA) at WellMed at Hebron in Carrollton, Texas, conducted Drew’s assessment. Simm recognized the urgency in Drew's symptoms, and after an initial review of his EKG, he knew something was seriously wrong.

"I acted on instinct," Simm said. "I knew something wasn't right."

Though Dr. Ansari was with another patient, Simm realized this could not wait.

"When I saw the abnormal EKG, I knew it was critical," Simm recalled. He politely knocked on the door and asked Dr. Ansari to review the EKG results.

Dr. Ansari's composed-yet-grave tone while he shared the diagnosis of a full heart blockage hit Drew hard. "Your heart rate is at 38 beats per minute," Dr. Ansari revealed. "I've called your parents to come get you; you can't drive."

Drew's mind raced with panic as he thought about his fiancée and the uncertain road ahead. "The seriousness hit me," he recalled. His parents drove him to Baylor, Scott & White Heart Hospital in Plano, where he was immediately admitted and taken into surgery.

The whirlwind continued as Drew underwent heart surgery and received a pacemaker.

"I feared the unknown," Drew confessed. "But the medical team's support eased my worries." Simm's compassionate hug and reassurance had a strong impact. "He knew I was scared," Drew gratefully acknowledged.

Life post-surgery brought adjustments — including limits on lifting and being extra cautious in certain environments. His work in environmental health safety requires him to avoid places and items with high magnetic fields, making lifestyle changes such as refraining from using headphones, wearing his watch on his right wrist and using his phone on his right ear or speakerphone.

"I've had to adapt," Drew admitted. "But the support from friends and my caring medical team made it manageable."

This experience changed me," Drew said. "It amplified my respect for health care professionals and the importance of regular health check-ups." His advice to others facing similar health concerns? "Don't delay seeking help. Trust your instincts and communicate openly with your health care provider,” he said. “This journey has been a testament to the importance of listening to your body and the incredible impact of timely care.”

His story is one of strength, thankfulness and the priceless impact of a caring health care team.

Today, Drew remains grateful.

"This journey taught me to prioritize health and cherish every moment," he said. "I owe my life to the remarkable care from WellMed and Simm Kapkeo."