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“Slight pain” leads to heart surgery

By Jake Beleski

[email protected]

In September 2015 Anthony Eising experienced a slight pain in his chest while chopping wood, and a few days later he underwent eight hours of complicated heart surgery.

Triple bypasses and quadruple bypasses are fairly common, but Mr Eising’s condition was more serious than that.

He had a quintuple bypass — a rare procedure required when five bypasses are needed to combat blockages in the coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart.

Nearly a year-and-a-half later and the 52-year-old is still on the recovery road, but is taking time out to help the Heart Foundation during their month-long annual appeal.

He has been living in Masterton for the past 17 years, and still vividly remembers the shock when he found out how serious his condition was.

“I was chopping some firewood one day and I had to stop to get my breath back,” he said.

“It was just a little pain — I just thought I was really tired, but I went to work on the Tuesday and the lady I worked for said to ring the doctor straight away.”

He underwent an electrocardiogram, which tests for problems with the electrical activity of the heart, and was sent to Wellington to undergo further testing.

Mr Eising was then hit with a double dose of bad news, as the seriousness of his condition became clear.

“I went back to the room and they said I might have to have a triple bypass, and I was absolutely shocked.

“Then the night before the operation the surgeon came to see me and said I was going to have five done . . . I’d never heard of anyone having that before.”

He considered himself a healthy person, and there were no signs of similar heart problems in the family.

Following the procedure it took six weeks for him to be able to drive again, and slight lifestyle changes had to be made, he said.

“I do half an hour to an hour exercise every day, and had a bit of change in diet.

“I was always a pretty healthy eater, but I’ve stopped eating chips and dip now, and I don’t drink as much.”

He had also quit smoking, and spent more time eating salads and fruit.

Mr Eising said it was vital people went to the doctor if they were feeling unwell, no matter how minor the symptoms may seem.

“Even a small pain that you’re not too sure about, get it checked out.

“I thought I was quite healthy until this happened.”

The Heart Foundation is holding its Wairarapa street appeal tomorrow and Saturday, and Mr Eising will be collecting for the foundation outside Paper Plus tomorrow from 10.30am-12pm.

Click here to donate: www.heartfoundation.org.nz


    • Wow Ants you’ve had a huge operation! I’m glad you’ve made it through and I wish you all the best for your continued recovery. Hope to see you over coming weeks.
      Evan B

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