From no signs of heart problems to a quintuple bypass

From no signs of heart problems to a quintuple bypass

Steve Brady had no signs of heart problems, even after his recent annual physical. Nevertheless, there was cause for concern. Without his persistent daughter and a simple heart scan, Brady’s story might have had a different ending.

All Brady wanted to do was get his daughter, Christie Rocke, off his back about getting a heart scan. As an advanced practice pulmonary nurse with Advocate Heart Institute at BroMenn Medical Center in Normal, Ill., she knew the risk factors and just wanted to make sure her dad was healthy. It was February 2016 – Heart Month – and scans were discounted, so Brady thought this was a good time to finally make an appointment at Advocate BroMenn.

“As a daughter, I was definitely hoping for a scan free from evidence of calcium. He was my relatively healthy, 58 year-old, active father who did not sit idle and let the world pass him by,” Rocke says. “However, as an advanced practice nurse, I had certainly prepared myself that it was possible he may have some early cardiac disease.”

Although Brady believed he was healthy, not even his daughter could have anticipated the news that came on April 5, 2016.

“I was meeting with my physician, and he gave me the results of my scan. I had scored in the 99th percentile range for potential heart issues. Only one other person out of 100 had a better chance of having a heart attack or stroke than me.”

The score from the scan is determined from the amount of calcium deposits you have in the arteries of your heart. The more calcification present, the higher the risk for heart problems. In Brady’s case, he was on the verge of a major emergency.

After receiving the shocking results from his primary care physician, Brady immediately went to see Advocate Heart Institute cardiologist Dr. Beth Tumilty and had several other tests completed. Within just four weeks of receiving his results, Brady was in surgery at Advocate BroMenn, having a quintuple bypass.

“I cannot speak highly enough of this screening program. My family and I firmly believe that if it were not for this screening program, my father likely would not be here today, celebrating life with us,” says Rocke.

It only took ten minutes and a $49 scan to potentially save Brady’s life.

“I tell everyone that it takes longer to walk in from the parking lot than to have the scan done. It was painless,” says Brady.

For more information on the healthy heart CT scan, visit

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About the Author

Cristina Meesenburg
Cristina Meesenburg

Cristina Meesenburg, health enews contributor, is a public affairs and marketing intern at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center in Normal, Ill. She is a senior at Illinois State University, pursuing a degree in public relations with a minor in writing. In her free time, she loves traveling, cooking and playing with her Yorkie, Sammy.