“I love Boston Scientific so much, it is now in my heart”
Cynthia doesn’t even want to think about what could’ve happened if she didn’t go in for that check-up.
It was 2020, and Cynthia was at an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon who was scheduled to perform a disc replacement in her cervical spine. She’d been dealing with debilitating neck pain for years, and the combination of physical therapy and pain medication that had previously been helping her manage her constant discomfort wasn’t working anymore.
The week before Cynthia’s surgery, her doctor recommended she have a cardiology workup.
“I brushed it off at first, telling my surgeon that I thought it was unnecessary,” says the office manager for Boston Scientific in Singapore. “I was just 49 years old at the time and felt fine!” Cynthia’s surgeon nudged her to make the appointment anyway, adding that the cardiologist was just downstairs from him and could likely sneak her in for a visit that day.
“My husband was with me and said, ‘Let’s go,’” says Cynthia. “So, I went.”
A surprising – and life-saving – diagnosis
The cardiologist ran bloodwork and did an electrocardiogram (EKG), a test used to measure electrical rhythms and detect heart problems. Cynthia could tell something was wrong immediately.
“The doctor looked at me and asked, ‘Are you feeling OK?’” she says. “I told him I was feeling fine.” But before she knew it, she was being scheduled for an emergency computed tomography (CT) scan of her heart, which uses x-rays to create a detailed picture of the heart and its blood vessels.
The results weren’t good. Three of her heart’s arteries were more than 60 percent blocked, and one was 97 percent blocked – a situation that put her at high risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Cynthia wouldn’t be having neck surgery as planned.
Instead, she’d need a cardiac catheterization, a procedure in which a cardiologist would insert a thin, flexible tube into an artery in her wrist and guide it into the artery in her heart that was almost fully blocked. Once at the site of this blockage, the surgeon would place a drug-eluting stent – a medical device that slowly releases a medication into the artery to prevent blood clots.
“When the doctor explained the procedure to me, I told him I work at Boston Scientific and insisted he use a Boston Scientific stent,” says Cynthia. “I believe in our products, and knowing I would receive our stent gave me more confidence going into that procedure.”
The heart of the matter
As Cynthia was rolled out of the operating room with her new stent in place, she was overwhelmed with gratitude. She thought back to the cardiologist check-up she almost didn’t go to and felt as though there had been some sort of divine intervention.
“I have two daughters who were 18 and 20 at the time, and I thought about how much they still needed me,” says Cynthia.
After a short two-week medical leave, Cynthia was back at work and focused on a massive project at the time: overseeing the renovation of Boston Scientific's regional headquarters in Singapore.. A year later, she was back in the same hospital, this time to get that neck surgery to replace a disc in her cervical spine.
These days, Cynthia feels better than ever. And she’s still filled with gratitude not only for how her story played out but also for Boston Scientific, a company dedicated to developing life-saving procedures and advancing technology to improve heart health.
“As both an employee at Boston Scientific and now a patient who received one of our products, I see firsthand how all of the company’s innovation is helping people,” says Cynthia.
“It’s one thing to say you work at an organization that saves lives. But to think that a device your company created saved your life? It’s amazing.”
Watch this video to learn more about Cynthia’s story.