Originally Posted by westofyou
My oldest friend has cardiomyopathy, known the guy for 30 years this month, has a pacemaker to control it.
Got it when he was 39 years old.
WOY--I'll see your friend, and raise you a Blimpie.
Two years ago (age 36), I was diagnosed-quite by accident--with the same thing. To be precise, my condition is known as Hypertrophic Obstructive Cardiomyopathy. Because 30% of these cases are diagnosed via an autopsy (as was the case with Chris Penn), I feel pretty lucky to have found out about the condition at all. This condition is the single most common form of sudden cardiac death in athletes of all ages (think: Hank Gathers, Reggie Lewis, Jason Collier, Thomas Herrion, etc..)
In my case, I always knew that surgery would eventually be my fate. My local cardiologist had been trying to treat me with medicines for the last two years, but my condition was still degrading rapidly. Because I have three kids to think about, I decided that I had to have an interventional procedure done--sooner, rather than later.
Last month, I spent seventeen days at the Cleveland Clinic where I had open heart surgery completed to remove the excessive thickness of the septal wall within my heart. Too soon to tell you it was an unqualified success, but I did manage to avoid having a pacing device installed.
If your friend is the kind of guy who loves to exchange war stories, shoot me a PM and I will forward you my info...