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Scott Crapp, Lancaster

Scott CrappHeart Health: We're Here for You!

This June was especially meaningful as Scott Crapp of Lancaster celebrated the recent high school graduation of his oldest son. Just a year ago, he experienced a scare of a lifetime that he won’t soon forget. What a difference a year can make!

As an active farmer, Scott doesn't slow down for much of anything. There is always something to be done and most illnesses are short-lived and then it’s back to work. But last year on June 5, Scott awoke around 1 a.m. extremely uncomfortable. He tried to sleep in a chair but was experiencing a heaviness in his chest. With pressure applied to his chest and side, the pain would lessen some, but by 2 a.m. he knew he had to wake up his wife, Shonda, and get help.

Serious

Normally, Scott might hesitate to go to the emergency room (ER). After all, he had felt fine all day up until that point. Shonda knew that when he didn’t argue, it must have been serious. After dropping him off at Grant Regional Health Center (GRHC) and parking the car, Shonda hurried in and found Scott was in a large trauma room, which she knew wasn't a good sign.

Their son, Jarin, has epileptic seizures, and the family has had to become routinely familiar with GRHC's ER.

In good hands

Scott's EKG indicated something was wrong, but what for sure was still uncertain. Could be a heart attack; could be something else. When the blood work returned, they were quickly informed Scott was going to be med-flighted to Madison. (Scott was one of the first patients last summer to experience a medflight takeoff from the alternate location on Roosevelt Street near Elite Fitness, due to GRHC's expansion project.) By 3 a.m., Shonda and their three children were on the way to Madison with wishes from GRHC staff to slow down and drive safely; Scott was in good hands, they reassured her. But Shonda was still filled with worry and her head was swimming with questions. Her father had open-heart surgery and a quadruple bypass just three years ago. Would Scott be the same? Would their children see their dad again? Would he be OK?

Good news

Luckily, it turned out to be myocarditis, which is a disease marked by inflammation and damage of the heart muscle. Interestingly, the symptoms resemble those of a heart attack. A cath was done immediately upon his arrival at Madison and an MRI was scheduled for later in the day. Between the time Scott checked in at GRHC and the time he arrived at Madison, his troponin spiked from 2.07 to 7, which meant Scott could not go home that day.

Scott was prescribed a regimen of three months of medication with high doses of aspirin for two weeks. Plus, no lifting over 10 pounds, a tall order for a farmer.

Scott and Shonda felt extremely lucky to have GRHC so close to home and that it was so well-equipped to help Scott during this terrifying moment of their lives. The UW physicians agreed that if not for GRHC’s care and attention, and if Scott had waited or ignored his symptoms, the situation could have taken a drastic turn for the worse.

Although the exact incidence of myocarditis is not known, it is estimated that several thousand patients per year are diagnosed in the U.S. Myocarditis usually affects otherwise healthy people. It is believed that 5 to 20 percent of all cases of sudden death in young adults are due to myocarditis. There are many causes of myocarditis, including viral infections, autoimmune diseases, environmental toxins and adverse reactions to medications.

When it comes to matters of the heart, GRHC’s team of expert physicians and Cardiac Rehab team are ready and available to assist you when you need it most.

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