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Cardiothoracic Surgery

Cardiothoracic Surgery

Comprehensive, integrated cardiac surgery, close to home. 

Good Samaritan Hospital patients enjoy the important benefit of knowing their case is managed by a unified cardiovascular team directing all aspects of care. This patient-first focus is top of mind every day, and makes coordination of care between primary physicians, cardiologists, surgeons and specialists seamless. Care protocols involve a full team of dedicated nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and allied health professionals who collaborate to provide the very best personalized, compassionate and comprehensive care.

Caption:  Good Samaritan Hospital OR Team (Photo Credit:  George Pejoves Photography)

Cardiovascular patients will find that choosing cardiac therapy close to the community they live in at the Active International Heart and Vascular Institute at Good Samaritan Hospital will make doctors’ visits, hospitalizations and follow-up appointments easier and less stressful – important factors that physicians recognize as key to patients’ successful healing and recovery.

Caption: The follow-up and preliminary office team located at 257 Lafayette Avenue, Suffern NY, Suite 330 provides compassionate and skilled care

Do You Need Open Heart Surgery? 

Good Samaritan Hospital has a long history of successful cardiothoracic surgery and prides itself on staying up-to-date by performing the newest minimally invasive cardiac procedures.

When medication and catheter-based treatments cannot relieve symptoms, surgery remains the accepted treatment for a range of cardiothoracic conditions, including but not limited to mitral valve prolapsed, atrial septal defect and coronary artery disease.

Less invasive procedures are increasingly available for patients facing cardiothoracic surgery. Good Samaritan Hospital embraces state-of-the-art minimally invasive approaches with small keyhole incisions made between the ribs to perform coronary bypass or make repairs to the heart valve and other cardiac conditions. These procedures avoid all the other complications of standard open surgery.

Good Samaritan Hospital is the only hospital in Rockland and Orange counties to provide a dedicated cardiothoracic program and access to specialized surgeons. Our two board-certified cardiothoracic surgeons work closely with your cardiologist and primary physician to develop a personalized care strategy.

Caption:  Cardiothoracic Surgeons, Chirag Dilip Badami, MD FACS and Cary S. Passik, MD FACS follow up with recovering patient (Photo Credit:  George Pejoves Photography)

Experienced Heart Surgeons Near You

Our surgeons have national reputations and extensive backgrounds of practice, teaching and research in Adult Cardiothoracic Surgery. Cary S. Passik, MD FACS was the first surgeon in Connecticut to perform surgical ventricular restoration for congestive heart failure, and to use sutureless aortic valves. Additionally, he developed a bloodless heart-surgery program in which 85 percent of elective surgical patients did not require transfusions after surgery. Chirag Dilip Badami, MD FACS has over 15 years of experience and specializes in valvular heart disease, arrythmia and heart failure, coronary artery disease, and TAVR and endoscopic therapies.

We Are The Cardiac Experts In the Hudson Valley

Caption:  Large, state-of-the-art Cardiac Operating Room (Photo Credit:  George Pejoves Photography)

At Good Samaritan Hospital we diagnose and surgically restore, repair or replace heart and lung function using the latest technology. Our state-of-the-art technology allows our cardiothoracic surgeons to perform surgical interventions in innovative ways that offer patients such benefits as faster recovery time, less pain and shorter hospital stays.

Our cardiothoracic surgeons treat a variety of heart-and chest-related diseases including:

  • Minimally invasive aortic valve surgery
  • Minimally invasive mitral valve repair and replacement
  • Minimally invasive coronary artery bypass grafting
  • Transcatheter aortic valve replacement – TAVR
  • Minimally invasive surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation
  • Aortic Aneurysm Surgery
  • Aortic Dissections
  • Coronary Artery Bypass grafting- off pump/on pump
  • Hybrid Revascularization
  • Laser Transmyocardial Revascularization(TMR)
  • Re-operative open heart surgery
  • Diseases of the Pericardium
  • Bicuspid Aortic Valve disease
  • Marphan’s Syndromeic and aortic connective tissue disease
  • Endovascular ahoracic aneurysm stenting
  • Adult congenital heart disease
  • Pediatric cardiac surgery
  • Cardiac trauma
  • Heart failure surgery
  • Ventricular reconstruction surgery

Recovering patients benefit from our comprehensive monitoring network which closely observes heart and lung functions to ensure a successful recuperation.  Our program offers a cutting-edge Cardiac ICU for patients to recover safely and comfortably.  

Good Samaritan Cardiac ICU unit and team (Photo Credit: George Pejoves Photography)

Most Advanced Cardiac Procedures in Rockland, Orange and Northern New Jersey Counties 

Good Samaritan Hospital Cardiac OR Team (Photo Credit: George Pejoves Photography)

Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery:  On and Off Pump

Coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) is perhaps the best-known type of cardiac surgery. Using portions or grafts of a patient’s own veins or arteries, surgeons provide a new source of blood flow around blocked coronary arteries. In on-pump bypass surgery, the surgeon opens the patient’s chest, stops the patient’s heart, and places the patient on a heart-lung machine while the operation takes place. In the newer, minimal access, off-pump procedures, surgeons are able to operate directly on the beating heart.

Valve Repair/Replacement Surgery

Good Samaritan cardiothoracic surgeons are highly skilled at repairing blocked or leaking heart valves. Our first choice is always to preserve native valve, but when a patient’s heart valve is too badly damaged, we use mechanical or tissue prostheses (including the implantation of human donor tissue). Our surgeons are skilled at minimally invasive valve repair techniques that involve two- to three-inch incisions rather than a major chest incision. For patients, such minimally invasive approaches offer reduced risk of infection, faster recovery times and less blood loss.

Atrial Fibrillation Surgery

Atrial fibrillation is a common but abnormal heart rhythm that can lead to rapid, irregular heartbeats. These heartbeats can cause discomfort, dizziness and shortness of breath. Left untreated, patients are at greatly increased risk for stroke.

While some patients can be treated with medications or catheter procedures, others are resistant to these interventions. Good Samaritan Hospital’s cardiothoracic surgeons perform minimally invasive surgery with small incisions to direct radiofrequency waves (modified electrical energy) on the surface of the heart, creating precise scar lines to block the erratic electrical impulses causing the irregular heartbeat.

All Arterial Grafting Bypass

In this technique, arteries from other parts of the body are used to provide the bypass grafts instead of using a combination of veins. All arterial bypass grafts have better chance of staying open in the long-run because of the strength of the arteries.

It is a more technically demanding operation than using vein bypasses and it takes longer in the operating room, which is why it is not done more frequently. The surgeons at Good Samaritan Hospital actually perform all artery bypasses 3x more than the national average.

Hear From Our Experts 

Cardiothoracic Surgeons: Cary S. Passik, MD, FACS; Chirag Dilip Badami, MD, FACS

When Do You Need Cardiac Surgery?  What Types of Cardiac Surgeries are Available?  


What are the Benefits of Having Your Cardiac Surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital?



What Questions Should You Ask Your Cardiac Surgeon Before Your Surgery?


Hear from the Cardiothoracic Surgeons at Good Samaritan Hospital


Learn More  

Caption:  Cary Passik, MD, FACS, Cardiothoracic Surgeon speaks with recovering patient (Photo Credit:  George Pejoves Photography)

In addition to our own website, there are other sites that provide interesting and helpful cardiac health information.

Because we are committed to improving the cardiothoracic healthcare knowledge of our patients, we are providing the following selection of links to other sites you might find interesting and informative.

See actual cases of other patients dealing with similar cardiac issues:

Edwards.com Patient Information

CTSurgeryPatients.org Adult Heart Disease Patients

Health Matters

What are the symptoms of a heart attack and how can you minimize your risk? Cary Passik, MD, Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at WMCHealth's Good Samaritan Hospital, discusses risk factors for heart disease and the latest treatment options during an interview on WTBQ Radio’s “Health Matters.”

Success Stories

February 14, 2023
What are the risk factors for heart disease? Listen to Chirag Badami, MD, cardiac surgeon at Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, on WRCR Radio. He discusses how to help keep your heart healthy and outlines the diagnosis and treatment options available.

February 22, 2022
Listen to WALL Radio with Cary Passik, MD, Clinical Director of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network. Dr. Passik provided tips on leading a healthy lifestyle. 

February 17, 2022
Listen to the inaugural show of “Health Matters” on WTBQ Radio. The first topic covers heart health with Dr. Cary Passik, Clinical Director of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital, and Brigida Hershberger, Lead Echo Cardiac Sonographer at St. Anthony Community Hospital, both members of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network. 

February 10, 2022
Listen to “House Calls” on WRCR-1700 AM Radio with Cary Passik, MD, Clinical Director of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network. Dr. Passik was interviewed on ways to keep your heart healthy with exercise, diet and more. 

September 9, 2021
Listen to “House Calls on WRCR-1700 AM radio with Cary Passik, MD, cardiothoracic surgeon and Clinical Director of the Good Samaritan Hospital Active International Cardiovascular Institute, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, and his patient, a 9/11 worker, as they discuss the care and commitment that went into a lifesaving triple bypass heart surgery.

September 9, 2021
Cary Passik, MD, cardiothoracic surgeon and Clinical Director of the Good Samaritan Hospital Active International Cardiovascular Institute, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, was interviewed alongside his patient for SiriusXM’s Doctor Radio show “Beyond the Heart.” Listen to the medical journey that brought new life to the 9/11 restoration worker and helped his family breathe easier.

September 9, 2021
Rockland County father of three and 9/11 restoration worker gives thanks to Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, for saving his life after coronary artery disease. Read the story published by Patch.

September 7, 2021
The cardiothoracic surgery team at Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, was interviewed by News 12 Hudson Valley on September 7, 2021. Learn how their expertise, timing and techniques gave a second chance to a 9/11 restoration worker and local father of three. Watch the story (via News 12).



Select a patient story below to learn more about their experience with Good Samaritan Hospital's Cardiac Care

Toby Lentz | Don’t ignore those symptoms that can signal a heart attack

Jordan Brandeis | Active Gym Fan Surprised by Heart Condition

Michael Weisgarber | A Precise, Unexpected Diagnosis Makes A Life-Saving Difference

Denise Hurban | Arterial Bypass Grafts Got This Teacher Back in the Classroom 


Kevin Meagher | TAVR Offers Minimally Invasive Heart Valve Replacement



Marcella Franks | TAVR Gets This Active Supervisor Back to Work and Fun



Testimonial: Toby Lentz

Press to hear Toby Lentz's story
Watch: Toby's story

Feeling Dizzy? Don’t ignore those symptoms that can signal a heart attack

This active grandma is now living her best life thanks to cardiac surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital.

Toby Lentz, 72 (“I don’t look my age!”) is a feisty, grandmother who lives in New City in Rockland County part of the year and in Florida in the winter. She is retired now but she and her husband, Jonathan Lentz, ran a family business of SAT prep courses in five states. Her son is running the business now. Last spring, she and her husband were shopping with her daughter and grandchild who were visiting from Virginia. She bent down to reach a hat for the baby and suddenly felt very dizzy. Her husband wanted to call an ambulance but since she wasn’t feeling any pain, she said no. Finally, he convinced her to go the hospital in an ambulance “in my high-heeled shoes!” At the hospital, the blood test showed that her enzymes were very high and she had had a mild heart attack. She had an angioplasty, and cardiologist Amala Chirumamilla, MD found her arteries to be grey and recommended surgery. She then had triple bypass surgery with Cary Passik, MD, Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital. She looks back now at how she ignored her dizziness over the last year or two. She said she would feel dizzy talking to friends and felt her heart racing. But because she never felt pain, she thought nothing of it. She realizes now that women’s symptoms can be different than men’s and cannot be ignored.

Testimonial:  Jordan Brandeis

Jordan Brandeis, 71, from New City, NY loves to stay active. He and his wife frequent their local gym five days a week, so when he was feeling some discomfort in his upper chest he did not immediately think it was a heart condition.

“I work out and I eat healthy, plus I wasn’t experiencing any of the traditional symptoms of a heart attack, like sharp pains or soreness in my arm. Thankfully, the discomfort I was feeling was strong enough that we went to the hospital on December 17, 2018,” said Brandeis.

As soon as Brandeis and his wife Libby arrived at the Emergency Department at Good Samaritan Hospital they were rushed in to see the doctor who quickly assessed the situation and called for a cardiology consult. Through an angiogram, cardiologist Andrew Shih, MD, FACC, determined that Brandeis had four complete blockages in his arteries and had suffered a heart attack. He was unable to repair the damage with stents; open heart surgery was the only option to keep the heart functioning.

“I had specifically chosen a cardiologist in Manhattan so if I ever needed heart surgery I could have it done at Lenox Hill or Columbia, and now it became clear that wasn’t an option. I had never thought I would have just minutes to make this decision,” said Brandeis.

The life-saving balloon pump Dr. Shih implanted as a temporary solution made it very dangerous to transport Brandeis. It was also a risk for him to delay the surgery anymore by traveling into the city. He and his wife immediately began researching the hospital, asking friends, family and the staff about Good Samaritan Hospital’s cardiology program.

“No one had a negative thing to say about [the cardiothoracic program] at Good Samaritan Hospital. My wife’s nephew is a doctor, and he said that the fact that we got to meet and speak to the doctors who would actually be performing the surgery was a huge plus. We would know for sure that it wasn’t someone who was learning on the job on my heart,” said Brandeis.

Cardiothoracic surgeons, Chirag Badami, MD, FACS and Cary Passik, MD, FACS both came to speak with Brandeis and his wife to explain the details of the quadruple bypass, and answer any questions to alleviate their anxiety.

“It came down to trust. I decided to stay and have the surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital because I trusted the doctors after speaking with them. They were very knowledgeable and experienced and had a great bedside manner. I felt confident in them and in my decision to stay in Rockland for my surgery,” said Brandeis.

The surgery was very successful and after five days in cardiac recovery, Brandeis was able to return home.

“We were delighted with everything at the hospital from the Emergency Department, to the pre-operation care, my doctors and nurses, the staff that took care of me in recovery. Everyone was professional and kind. They treated my wife with respect and care. The facilities and the recovery room were phenomenal and the convenience was so helpful.” Brandeis was so impressed with his treatment, he decided to continue his follow-up care with Dr. Shih rather than travel back into Manhattan for his cardiology appointments.

“I firmly believe it was the fast action of the whole staff at Good Samaritan Hospital that saved my life – if I left the hospital I wouldn’t have made it. I realized that you can get the same level of care right here in Rockland, and you don’t need to travel. You don’t always have that choice and it is good to know life-saving care is right here.”

>> Read More Success Stories


Testimonial:  Michael Weisgarber 

A Precise, Unexpected Diagnosis Makes A Life-Saving Difference

Surgeons at Good Samaritan Hospital treat a dangerous heart condition called aortic dissection in the nick of time.

By David Levine

Michael Weisgarber, a special-education teacher at Orange Ulster BOCES, had just finished teaching summer school and was looking forward to his two-week vacation.

But, at his Suffern home on Sunday, August 12, 2018, he felt a pain in his chest that quickly escalated. “I could tell it was more than just heartburn,” says Weisgarber, 51. He had trouble catching his breath and experienced pain and weakness in his legs.

A neighbor drove him to Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth), a few miles away. Quick evaluation in the Emergency Department, including a CT scan, revealed he was not having a heart attack but was instead suffering from an aortic dissection, a rare and even more life-threatening problem that requires immediate surgery.

Luckily, cardiothoracic surgeon Chirag Badami, MD, was working that Sunday. He knew how serious the situation was.

Dr. Badami called his colleague, cardiothoracic surgeon Cary Passik, MD, to come in on his day off because this complex operation required the expertise of more than one surgeon. (He also called his wife. “It was her birthday, and I told her I couldn’t take her out to dinner,” Dr. Badami says.)

An aortic dissection occurs when a tear forms in the inner layer of the aorta, the largest blood vessel in the body. As blood flows through the tear, it causes the layers of the aorta to separate, or dissect, and fill with blood. The resulting obstruction can block blood vessels and blood flow in and out of the heart, as well as cause blood leakage that can lead to shock. If this channel bursts, it can cause quick and fatal blood loss.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, aortic dissection occurs in about two out of every 10,000 people. “It’s not terribly common,” Dr. Passik says. “The problem is that mortality without an emergency operation goes up about 1 percent per hour for the first 48 hours, so there is a need to get going as quickly as possible.”

Weisgarber’s situation, however, was complicated. When his aorta split, Dr. Passik explains, blood flow to his lower body was affected. This caused Weisgarber’s leg pain and weakness. If repairing the dissection did not restore blood flow to his legs, he would need more surgery.

During the procedure, his chest was opened, and his body was supported by the heart-lung machine. Utilizing a technique known as deep hypothermic circulatory arrest, Weisgarber’s body temperature was lowered to about 65°F, so that his brain and other organs could safely withstand a lack of blood flow for up to 30 minutes while the diseased, torn section of the aorta was replaced with a synthetic graft. “The patient actually has no vital signs during this portion of the operation,” Dr. Passik says. In Weisgarber’s case, it took just 14 minutes before he was back on the heart-lung machine.

Weisgarber handled the six-hour surgery without a problem, and blood flow returned to his lower extremities. He woke in the ICU that same day, was up and walking the next day and was discharged five days later.

He slowly built his stamina and strength by walking. “In a few months, I may be able to run and lift things, but not yet,” he said in October. But he can drive and hopes to return to work soon. Risk factors for aortic dissection include uncontrolled high blood pressure, a genetic predisposition like Marfan’s disease, a preexisting aortic aneurysm, drug use that leads to high blood pressure, and heavy weightlifting, among others. None of these applied in Weisgarber’s case, and there was no family history of heart disease. So, the cause of his rupture is ultimately unknown but presumed to be genetic.

“Luckily, he came in as soon as he didn’t feel well,” Dr. Badami says, though he does advise anyone who thinks they may be having a heart attack to call 911.

“The cardiac surgical group at Good Samaritan Hospital has over 40 years of combined experience. We knew our team could handle it,” Dr. Passik says. “We have the capability to do complex procedures here. You don’t need to go down to the city. For the most part, people don’t have to look any further than this hospital for their cardiovascular care.”

Weisbarger concurs.

“How lucky for me that you can walk into a hospital on Sunday and a cardiothoracic surgeon is right there to say, ‘We have to take care of this right now,’” he says. “I got outstanding care at Good Sam. The doctors and nurses, the whole staff, were instrumental in getting me on my feet, out the door and back home.”

To learn more about cardiothoracic surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital, call 845.368.8800.

Photo By John Halpern

>> Read More Success Stories


Testimonial:  Denise Hurban

Arterial Bypass Grafts Got This Teacher’s Aide Back in Her Classroom

The surgical team at Good Samaritan Hospital helped Denise Hurban find strength from within.

By Melissa F. Pheterson

As seen in the January/February 2020 Issue of Advancing Care

As her left arm slid off the steering wheel, Denise Hurban had one panicked thought: I don’t want to die in the car. Hurban, 50, was acutely aware of her personal and family history of heart problems. At 33, with a newborn baby, she’d learned that one of her coronary arteries had narrowed so dangerously that she needed a stent to widen it. Her younger brother had needed a similar procedure. Seared into Hurban’s memory was her father dying of a heart attack, at the wheel, at age 41.

Throughout the spring of 2019, Hurban had suffered chest pains, which she mistook for indigestion. But as a special-education teacher’s aide, she was focused on helping her students finish the school year. On June 3, her upset stomach returned as she scrubbed her bathroom floor. Reluctant to stay home and lose the day, she took antacids and began her commute from Tappan to Pearl River.

But a few minutes later, she lost her grip on the wheel. She called her daughter Bryanna, a nurse who had just finished her night shift. “She said, ‘I think you’re having a heart attack,’” Hurban recalls. Bryanna brought Hurban to Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth), in Suffern. Soon after she entered the building, the numbness returned. She was seen immediately by a cardiologist, who promptly performed a cardiac catheterization and called in the surgical team.

“Denise had premature coronary artery disease and aggressive atherosclerosis — the buildup of plaque in her arteries, which is a condition that runs in her family,” says Cary Passik, MD, a cardiothoracic surgeon at Good Samaritan Hospital. Her stent had kept the disease at bay for 17 years, but the numbness and upset stomach signaled a mild heart attack.

The catheterization showed that Hurban’s left main coronary artery had narrowed. This time, however, she would require bypass surgery in which segments of blood vessels are grafted below the blockages, thus creating a new route for blood flow.

A New Take on Traditional Bypass

“While there is currently no cure for atherosclerosis, our goal is to offer surgery that will offer good health, lasting as long as possible, especially for younger patients, like Denise,” Dr. Passik explains. Traditional bypass surgeries use a combination of arteries and veins, but Dr. Passik chose to use two specific types of arteries instead: the mammary arteries (which are “almost immune to atherosclerosis”) and a radial artery, from her forearm, which also has a better chance of remaining open over the long run.

Creating a bypass with arteries instead of veins requires a longer surgery, a more meticulous technique, and because the sternum must be divided during surgery, it can take longer to heal. However, Dr. Passik, along with his partner, cardiothoracic surgeon Chirag Badami, MD, felt that Hurban was a good candidate. “This surgery is not ideal for obese or diabetic patients, or patients of advanced age,” he says.

“I have also found that bypass surgery tends to be a life-changing experience that helps patients realize they may need to change their diets, quit smoking and become more active,” he continues. “With the patient taking better care of themselves and the longevity of all arterial grafts, this procedure is as close to a cure for coronary artery disease as we have.”

Summer Vacation

With her care team working quickly, Hurban had the bypass surgery on June 5. “Dr. Passik and the nurses explained everything to my daughter and spoke to her immediately after surgery. They were thorough; they put us at ease, and their bedside manner was amazing,” she says. “I have deep respect for Dr. Passik and his team.”

Determined to return to school in September, she spent the summer recovering while trying to cultivate healthier lifestyle habits: taking nature walks, watching movies, reducing salt intake and placing chicken and vegetables in regular rotation at dinnertime. When the first bell of the school year sounded, she was back in action — and ready to ring in a new chapter.

>> Read More Success Stories


Testimonial: Kevin Meagher

Kevin Meagher, 90, has been a resident of Suffern, NY, for over 50 years. His journey with Good Samaritan Hospital began in 2017, when he experienced a heart attack that caused a dangerously low heart rate and severe leaking of his mitral valve. In the ED, Meagher met cardiologist, Rajiv Singh, MD, who is a part of the Good Samaritan Hospital HeartSTAT program. Through this program he immediately underwent emergency stenting of multiple blocked arteries. The leaking of his mitral valve was successfully resolved, and he went home with a full recovery.

Meagher continued as an outpatient with Dr. Singh, with close monitoring of his coronary arteries, stents and heart valves. “I felt very confident with Dr. Singh, he was always very thorough and took the time to explain things to me,” said Meagher.

During the COVID pandemic, Meagher noticed that he experiencing shortness of breath when walking or playing golf. Dr. Singh performed an ultrasound of his heart, confirming that Meagher had a calcified aortic valve that had trouble opening, called stenosis. He recommended a valve replacement.

Fortunately for Meagher, the Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) Program at Good Samaritan Hospital had recently been introduced. TAVR is a minimally-invasive approach that enables the replacement of a diseased aortic valve through the use of very small incisions. It can result in less discomfort for the patient, shorter hospital stays, quicker recovery and fewer post-procedure restrictions than traditional, open-heart surgery. Meagher was living independently and walking freely prior to his valve symptoms, making him an excellent candidate for TAVR.

In addition to Dr. Singh, Meagher’s TAVR team included cardiothoracic surgeons, Cary Passik, MD, FACS, and Chirag Badami MD, FACS, imaging specialists, anesthesiologists, cardiac nurses and a valve nurse coordinator. Meagher successfully underwent the TAVR procedure without complication, and was surprised how quickly he recovered. “I had the surgery on a Monday and I could not believe I was headed home on Tuesday! I was able to take a walk around the recovery room and I felt an immediate difference. I thought I would feel weaker, but I was able to get back to all of my old activities,” said Meagher.

Meagher was very impressed with the staff at Good Samaritan Hospital and would recommend the TAVR procedure to anyone experiencing the debilitating symptoms of aortic stenosis. In addition to spending time with his family, he is looking forward to getting back on the golf course this spring!

>> Read More Success Stories


Testimonial:  Marcella Franks

Marcella Franks, 77, of Port Jervis, NY, likes to stay active and despite officially retiring 13 years ago, she continues to work part-time as a Production Supervisor at Kolmar Labs.  Her job keeps her busy and she is always on her feet, so when she started to experience increased fatigue and shortness of breath early this fall, she went to her primary care provider and cardiologist, Walter Kaufmann, MD of the Bon Secours Medical Group.  Dr. Kaufmann recommended she have an echocardiogram at Bon Secours Community Hospital and the results showed that her heart value needed replacing.

As part of the collaborative network of quality care, Dr. Kauffman referred Franks to fellow Bon Secours Medical Group cardiologist, Rajiv Singh, MD, who is part of the new Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) Program at Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern, NY.   Franks was excited to hear about the minimally invasive valve replacement solution and was impressed during her first consultation with Dr. Singh.

“Dr. Singh took the time to sit down and walk me through the entire TAVR procedure.  He gave helpful examples and showed me specific images of what to expect.  It was like talking to a close friend.  His demeanor and expertise eliminated the fear of the unknown and made me confident I was making the right choice.  Dr. Singh and the team at Good Samaritan Hospital went the extra mile and researched a custom solution that was tailored to my exact heart valve,” said Franks.

TAVR is a minimally-invasive approach that enables the replacement of a diseased aortic valve through the use of very small incisions. It can result in less discomfort for the patient, shorter hospital stays, quicker recovery and fewer post-procedure restrictions than traditional, open-heart surgery.

In addition to Dr. Singh, Franks’ TAVR team included cardiothoracic surgeons, Cary Passik, MD, FACS, and Chirag Badami MD, FACS, imaging specialists, anesthesiologists, cardiac nurses and a valve nurse coordinator.

Franks successfully underwent the TAVR procedure without complication.  “I was able to go home the very next day after my TAVR.  I do not believe I would have recovered as quickly or as well as I have had it not been for the positive energy of the entire Good Samaritan Hospital staff.  The team is incredibly professional, compassionate and personal.  Suzanne Bartman, BSN, RN, CCRN, the valve nurse coordinator, was with me every step of the way.  She is a wonderful resource,” said Franks.  In addition to spending time with her family, Franks is enjoying taking long walks and bike rides with friends again!

>> Read More Success Stories

Badami, Chirag D., MD
  • Thoracic and Cardiac Surgery
  • General Surgery
Passik, Cary S., MD
  • Thoracic and Cardiac Surgery