Critical illness forces the retirement of Dr. Alnoor Abdulla

Critical illness forces the retirement of Dr. Alnoor Abdulla

Toronto : Canada | Jun 27, 2013 at 12:40 PM PDT
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Dr.Alnoor Abdulla Cardiac illness

Dr. Alnoor Abdulla is glad to be alive. A 30 year veteran of the world of cardiology, he knows first-hand that most people diagnosed with the severity of cardiac disease that he has would not have lived to talk about it.

A strong family history of cardiac disease and high cholesterol, an intensive workload, and years of stress and long work hours all caught up with Dr. Alnoor Abdulla when, ironically, the cardiologist himself fell victim to severe coronary artery disease.

In 2005 he was diagnosed with blockages in all three of his main coronary arteries and needed an extensive balloon angioplasty and insertion of several drug-coated stents. But the disease was aggressive and progressed. He endured multiple medications, 10 angiography /angioplasty procedures and insertion of a total of 8 drug coated stents over the next six years.

Things got worse in the spring of 2012, and Dr. Alnoor Abdulla’s condition took a very severe down turn. He had urgent major coronary bypass surgery at St. Paul’s Hospital, where the surgeon had to perform five bypasses. There were complications and his post-op course was very difficult. After a slow, gradual recovery another setback hit four months later: the return of angina and new blockages in three of his bypasses and one of his own arteries.

All of this illness took a great toll, both personally and professionally. Dr. Abdulla started slowly cutting back on his workload when his health problems began to get serious. By 2008, he had reduced his clinical work to out-patient office, consultative private practice. But after the critical major cardiac surgery in the spring of 2012, it was clear that things needed to change. His doctor and family strongly urged him to consider retirement from clinical practice.

Alnoor notes that “after last-ditch quintuple bypass surgery and a very stormy post op course, my doctors, family and friends all urged me to finally close the practice and get rid of that stress.”

So he slowly tied up his case-load, took care of his patients’ needs, and set them up with other cardiologists. He shut the doors to his practice in the summer of 2012. It was a difficult time, but his health had to take priority. Today Dr. Abdulla continues his struggle with cardiac issues. He’s closely followed by several specialists, is on a strict diet, a regular Health Heart cardiac rehabilitation program, and is on multiple medications.

His prognosis remains uncertain.

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Video summarising Dr. AA's cardiac history and his Healthy Heart rehab program
MarGenn is based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and is a Stringer on Allvoices.
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