Stories from the Heart, Larry Morago
Larry Morago experienced chest pain and discomfort for years, dismissing it as a return of the asthma he suffered as a child.
But the pains were getting worse. On a Thanksgiving trip to visit his daughters, he couldn’t finish his afternoon walk and felt the need to sleep away the day. His family thought it was heartbreak, caused by the recent passing of Cathy, his wife of 43 years.
His doctor gave Morago a stress test, followed by an angiogram. The tests revealed that his heart was blocked, not broken. Spowart performed a quadruple bypass, creating detours around Morago’s blocked arteries using arteries or veins from other parts of his body. The grafts opened the way for oxygen and nutrients to reach his heart more freely.
“My first thought,” Morago says, “was ‘Oh no, I’m going to have to go through a lot all over again,’ as we did with my wife’s cancer. But for me, they identified the problem and then fixed it. And my recovery has been very, very good. Faster than anyone anticipated.
“I don’t know how they do it. As I think of the operation, it’s hard to fathom how it’s possible. And the staff and nurses at CHOMP were
amazing. They walked me around starting the next day, which began my recovery.
“Looking back,” he says, “I realize all the pains and pressures I attributed to asthma over the years were heart issues. My doctors agree. I think of all the times I walked into town, felt a pain in my chest, and decided to walk through it. Until the day I couldn’t.”