Affiliated Organizations
  HN Medical Partners   School of Nursing   HNH Fitness   Villa Marie Claire   Simulation Learning   Haiti Health Promise
Medical Partners Offices
Cardiovascular Specialists University Orthopaedic Pulmonary Specialists Obstetrics & Gynecology North Jersey Heart North Jersey Surgical Surgical Specialistss Primary Care Specialty Assoc. Urologic Specialties Women's Health Care

Ana Marti

Healing from the Heart

Holy Name Patient Stories - Ana Marti

Movies and TV shows get heart attacks all wrong – most people don't get a stabbing pain. "It's more like an 800-lb bear is crushing your chest," said Ana Marti, a Hackensack resident who had a heart attack when she was just 59 years old.

"It's like nothing else I've ever felt," Ana said. "Like something was squeezing my chest so hard I could barely breathe. Then that feeling went up to my jaw and ears."

Before her heart attack, Ana had been experiencing mild chest pains on and off for about two months. She was a school principal at the time and attributed the discomfort to stress. It wasn't until the crushing sensation suddenly worsened and literally took her breath away that she realized the seriousness of her condition, rushing to the nearest hospital for treatment.

After her initial treatment, Ana was prescribed cardiac rehabilitation, and she knew she wanted to go to Holy Name. "It's just so beautiful with fantastic people that are very knowledgeable."

Ana attended cardiac rehab at Holy Name for three months, where the staff guided her from intake through every exercise. "They answered all my questions, monitored my vital signs and were with me with every step I took."

Like many others recovering from a heart attack, Ana worried anytime she experienced pain or discomfort, thinking she may be having another cardiac issue. The care and counseling she received at Holy Name diminished her fears but as the three months of prescribed rehab drew to a close, she grew anxious. She said she "felt like I was flying solo."

She soon learned, however, that comprehensive cardiac care at Holy Name doesn't stop just because a rehabilitation program ends. Her physical therapists walked her through exactly what to expect in the weeks and months ahead and told her to call anytime with questions or concerns, no matter how small.

Months later, Ana got a nosebleed in an exercise class. Her first call was to Kevin Edelbach, her certified exercise physiologist at Holy Name, who helped her remain calm and asked enough questions to help her realize the nosebleed was likely a side effect of changing blood thinner medication. She immediately felt better and Kevin said he would check back with her after she followed up with her physician.

"Through it all, I want people to know about the different symptoms people feel when they're having a heart attack. My message is simple: pay attention to your body and if something feels off, seek care from those you can trust," Ana said. "I feel so much better knowing that even after my treatment is finished, Holy Name is always there for me."