Patient Stories

Patient Stories

Search by Category
Featured Story

Heart to Heart: Father and Son Firefighters Grateful to Hoag’s Cardiac Surgery Team

The nurse was impressed. Recuperating from robotic mitral valve repair surgery at Hoag’s Jeffrey M. Carlton Heart & Vascular Institute, Kenneth Kamp said a nurse performed a bedside echocardiogram on him and commended the repair. No sign of leakage. Something you’d expect in a valve replacement surgery but remarkable in a repair. Incredible job. “I … Read More

Featured Story

After 10 Years with GERD, Patient Says, ‘I Received the Best Results’

Julie Engquist ties her shoes. She sleeps with just one pillow. She walks her dog. If these things don’t sound groundbreaking, you’ve likely never contended with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). But Julie had. For 10 years. “The pain and discomfort were overwhelming,” she said. “There were a few times where I thought I was having … Read More

Featured Story

Grateful Patient Thanks Surgeon for Not Operating

Linda Lifur-Bennett, Ph.D., wants to clarify one thing: She is a patient of Burak Ozgur, M.D., director of the Hoag Spine Center. No, the Newport Beach neurosurgeon did not operate on Dr. Lifur-Bennett. In fact, he did not perform any procedures on the 70-year-old clinical psychologist. Rather, through his compassion and expertise, Dr. Ozgur prevented … Read More

Featured Story

Bariatric Surgery Patient Loses 91 Pounds and Gains New Lease on Life

Tamra Rose says she was overweight most of her adult life. But when her son turned a year and a half, and the scale tipped passed her delivery weight, Tamra had enough. She works at Hoag and had learned from a colleague that the hospital was opening a Bariatric Surgery Weight Loss Program. She had … Read More

Featured Story

Fudge Family Acute Rehabilitation Center Patient Says Hoag Is ‘Living Out Their Hearts for Society’

It was such a small stumble. Oscar Constandse and his buddies were at the tail end of a bachelor party in Cabo San Lucas. The hour was way, way too late, and Oscar tripped on his way to the cantina bathroom. That’s all he remembers about the accident. His friends told him later that he … Read More

Featured Story

Bypass Patient Grateful for His Winning Team

Dan Ryan is a competitive person with an abiding appreciation for sports. So, when he refers to Anthony Caffarelli, M.D., as the “Tom Brady” of heart surgeons, the analogy commands attention. “It is pretty cool that you’re excited that the guy is going to give you a quintuple bypass,” said Dan, 59, who recently underwent … Read More

Neuroscience

After 72 Years of Seizures, Epilepsy Patient Says Hoag Gave Him His Life Back

His seizures began at the age of 4. By the time Michael Merritt was 72, his epilepsy became so severe his wife was sure he was going to die. But in 2018, Michael’s doctors referred him to the Epilepsy Program at Hoag’s Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute, where he met Program Director David Millett, M.D., Ph.D. … Read More

Women's Health

Maternal Mental Health Patient Is Grateful for Her Experience

Asked why she chose to seek out the Hoag Maternal Mental Health Program, Sarah Levine describes a day in her life. Picture the scene: It’s smack-dab in the middle of one of those random heat waves and the air conditioning goes out (because, of course it does). Sarah is in the kitchen with twin babies … Read More

Wellness

One Decision ‘Saved My Life’ – Hoag Patient Grateful for Doctor’s Diligence

Eugene Yim, M.D. Steve Prough and his wife, Kathy, decided to enroll under the care of Dr. Eugene Yim in August. He says, one month later, that decision saved his life. In September, in the midst of the pandemic, Steve visited Dr. Yim with a fever and a cough that had persisted for a week. … Read More

Digestive Health

After a Lifelong Search, Gastroparesis Patient Finds Hope

Within minutes of their first meeting, Caitlin Houghton, M.D., said the words that Brittney Pisanelli, 33, had been hoping to hear for most of her life: “You have options.” “I started crying in her office,” Brittney said. “I had never been told that before. Someone wanted to help me. Someone wanted to help me function … Read More