Everyone faces obstacles in life, some worse than others. When the Pulse editorial team listened to Ashok’s story, what struck the team was his gratefulness for life and deep love for his family. Behind the kind demeanour and warm exterior is a man who has to battle one of life’s toughest trials. However, he has not only emerged stronger but is also ready to grab life by the horns. Here is his story.
Share with us a bit about yourself.
A: I am a sports manager. I run about five departments and have been there for close to 20 years.
Could you share with us your heart journey story?
A: About two years ago, I felt some uneasiness around my chest area whenever I went to bed. It went on for a couple of days so I decided to go to the hospital. I was admitted for three days. My blood test, electrocardiogram (ECG) and X-ray results were quite good but an angiogram showed that there were three major blockages in my heart. Two of the blockages were about 90% while one of them was 70%. Thus, a stenting procedure could not be done and I had to undergo a triple bypass in April 2016.
How did you feel when you first found out about it?
A: It scared me. It was something I had never expected. Being a sportsperson, you think you can get away with all these. You might be very fit but nobody knows what is inside. There are so many ways you can get a heart attack.
How has your lifestyle changed since the surgery?
A: I have always been an outgoing person so it took me a while to readjust. I used to eat junk food and go out partying but I have stopped all that. I now consume food with less oil and eat more greens. I also sleep earlier, which helps me go to work feeling refreshed. I feel so much better after adopting a healthier lifestyle.
What is the greatest thing you have learnt?
A: Life is very important. I wish to spend more time with my family and see my son grow up. The key thing is to be happy as that helps you with your health.
What is one thing you would like to say to fellow heart survivors?
A: Treasure and enjoy what you have. I don’t regret going through the surgery because it has given me a second chance in life.
What is one thing you would like to say to the public?
A: Don’t take your health for granted. If you don’t feel good, go see the doctor. Stress will always be there but exercise and healthy eating will help.
About The Heart Fund
A subsidiary of NUHS Fund, The Heart Fund aims to assist needy heart patients and support cardiovascular research and education programmes.
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