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Survivor Story of Matthew Weingartner

Updated: Aug 14, 2021

My name is Matthew Weingartner. I am 32 years old and live in Long Island, New York.

In 2006, after a failed EKG during my college baseball physical (at Farmingdale College), I went to see a Cardiologist for clearance. At that doctor visit, an echocardiogram was performed that revealed a malfunctioning tricuspid valve that was also causing my aorta to enlarge.

My next appointment was with a Thoracic surgeon. It was at that time that I was diagnosed with an ascending aortic aneurysm and December 28, 2006 underwent emergency open heart surgery to replace the malfunctioning valve and have a surgical graft placed on my aorta.

Then December 21, 2017 I underwent a second open heart surgery to replace the malfunctioning bovine valve from 2006. I was on my way to fully recovering when on April 18, 2018 I suffered a Massive Ischemic Stroke, a result of a blood infection that traveled to the valve of his heart, causing a clot to break off and then travel up to my brain. It left me partially paralyzed and unable to verbally communicate without difficulty. I am currently in Speech, PT & OT.

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