Every Wednesday Avera offers Stroke and Vascular Screenings at the Sioux Falls HyVee stores for the sake of convenience. With a portable ultra sound machine, clinical staff checks for abdominal aortic aneurysms, the potential for stroke, and peripheral arterial disease. We talked to a Sioux Falls man who is alive today because of the screening.
It's a rare occasion to find John Scheafer at home in Sioux Falls. He's a trucker by trade and usually on the road, so that left his wife Bernie Schwans with a challenge; making sure John would find time to get in to Avera's Stroke and Vascular Screenings. John had open heart surgery 4 years ago and is at high risk for repeated problems. Finally in August, at the insistence of his wife, John got checked and thank goodness he did. They found a large abdominal aortic aneurysm.
John says, "They said you aren't going anywhere until you see a doctor and that time is now."
John's wife Bernie says, "There are no symptoms for aortic aneurysms. Thank gosh he did the screening. it I don't know if he'd be alive because the doctor says if it bursts you typically have 5 minutes to live."
In fact, cardiologists say when abdominal aortic aneurysms rupture more than half the people who suffer one die from internal bleeding before ever getting medical attention. That's why screenings like these are so important.
John says, "Well I suppose if it had broken, I'd on the wrong side of the grass or something."
John went on to have his damaged aorta repaired at the Avera Heart Hospital with a stent graft. His wife went in for the same screening two weeks later and has successfully encouraged a lot of friends and relatives to do the same.
Bernie says, "It's a short process and so easy to do. It only takes about 25 minutes of your time. Some people think you have to take all your clothes off, you don't. Actually all they do is check here and here and here and you're done. "
For obvious reasons, the Scheafers are strong advocates for Avera's Vascular Screening. John's here to talk about it because of it.
Again, Stroke and Vascular Screenings are available on Wednesday's at the Sioux Falls HyVee stores and at the Avera Heart Hospital. The locations rotate.
Call 1-877-AT-AVERA to make an appointment or to get more information.