Patients show their love to doctors on Valentine’s Day

Posted at 11:15 PM, Feb 14, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-14 23:15:44-05

Valentine’s Day is about matters of the heart.

That’s why each year St. Francis Hospital, The Heart Center, reunites patients with the doctors that helped mend their broken hearts.

“Thank you so much that I’m alive, basically.  You enriched my life in ways I couldn’t explain,” said Kristen Murphy.

14-year-old Kristen Murphy says her doctor Sean Levchuck allowed her to experience the world.

“A world that’s full of happiness that I had never known.”

At 3-years-old Kristen’s heart was working in overdrive.  Walking up one flight of stairs for Kristen would have been like a person with a normal heart climbing three flights.

If she had to live with the condition it could have caused developmental delays.  Meaning she may not have been able to sing or play sports. But now she does this.

“For anybody in medicine this is what you hope for, when you go into this profession you hope that you can impact somebody’s life,” said Chairman of Pediatric Cardiology Sean Levchuck

Andrea Kantor had the opposite problem.  When she first went to The Heart Center she barely had a pulse. Her heart beat just 18 times a minute.

Vinni Jayam M.D., Cardiology, said, “If you came to me with 18 beats per minute you wouldn’t be walking, you’d be passing out or unable to even stand up.”

But since doctor Vinni Jayam installed a pacemaker for Kantor she’s run to the top of the world, even finishing third among all female runners in an annual race to the top of the Empire State Building.

“Without the pacemaker and without doctor Jayam’s support I couldn’t have done it,” Kantor said.  “He gave me my heart back.”