Wednesday, September 07, 2005

So Long Gilligan

Bob Denver died this week. The 70-year old comedic actor was best known for his portrayal of Gilligan of Gilligan's Island. He succumbed to complications from a coronary artery bypass surgeons convinced him he needed. One has to wonder if, like Bill Clinton, he did not receieve a second opinion from a noninvasive cardiologist. You only hear about the failures of bypass surgery when someone famous passes that has undergone one. But there are thousands of bypasses performed unnecessarily year after year to keep big hospital corporations solvent and highly paid surgeons able to buy a brand new Mercedes Benz every year.

It has been nearly two years since my cardiologist attempted to coerce me into getting a quintuple coronary artery bypass. I began being treated with medication on June 6, 2004 and I feel great. And I don't have a nasty scar on my chest where the surgeons cracked it open. Already I have lived longer than the doctors at the Indiana Heart Hospital thought I would and I am going strong.

I have been working as a safety advisor on an offshore drilling rig in Nigeria, West Africa since April. I feel strong and vital and my stamina is that of a man ten years younger than I am. If I had the surgery, chances are I would still be experiencing post operative pains and complications and wouldn't feel half as good as I do now.

In November, Rebecca and I are going on a five night vacation to the City of Lights, Paris, France. I fully intend to take advantage of the romantic atmosphere and environment and enjoy myself with the woman I love.

If doctors tell you or a friend you need a bypass, politely tell them you want to obtain a second opinion froma noninvasive cardiologist. Try medication before getting your chest cracked open unnecessarily.