Glendale doctors fix Santa’s heart just in time for Christmas

Posted 12/15/19

Doctors at Abrazo Arrowhead fixed Santa’s heart this year in time to pass out presents for the holiday season.

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Glendale doctors fix Santa’s heart just in time for Christmas

Posted

Doctors at Abrazo Arrowhead fixed Santa’s heart this year in time to pass out presents for the holiday season.

That’s the word from the Glendale hospital, where a team of heart surgeons and hospital staff made sure the jolly old elf was ready for his Christmastime rounds.

Lowell Kuester is a professional Santa during the Christmas season, and he needed a heart valve replacement, said Abrazo Arrowhead Structural Heart Nurse Navigator Katrina Ostwald.

Mr. Kuester had transcatheter aortic valve replacement surgery in September at Abrazo Arrowhead.

“The first thing he said to our surgeons, Dr. Merick Kirshner and Dr. Nishant Gupta, was that he needed his heart fixed before Christmas because he is ‘Santa’,” Ms. Ostwald said. “Dr. Kirshner said, ‘We will fix your heart for sure but I want to take a picture with you as Santa later’.”

“We added jingle to Santa’s heart with minimally invasive valve surgery,” Dr. Gupta said with a laugh. “We all know Santa delivers happiness. But what happens when Santa’s generous heart needs some repairs? This is a truly heartwarming story.”

True to his word, Mr. Kuester returned to Abrazo Arrowhead Campus last week to pose for holiday photos with his doctors, nurses and hospital leaders.

“He had his TAVR and did wonderfully just in time for Christmas," Ms. Ostwald said. "He came back to Abrazo Arrowhead for our TAVR team holiday photo and to take his picture with the doctors who fixed him.  It was an emotional and happy day for everyone involved."

NOTE: Information from Abrazo Arrowhead Campus.

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