Cardiomyopathy is a disease that affects the heart muscle that makes it inefficient to pump blood throughout the rest of the body. Cardiomyopathy causes symptoms such as palpitations, shortness of breath, and fatigue. This disease can eventually lead to congestive heart failure due to the weakening of heart muscles.
Towards the end of June 2019, Josephine Gonzales, 57 years old, was taken to Guam Memorial Hospital because of palpitations. She has a history of stroke in January 2017 which caused cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure. Upon arriving to the hospital, several workups were done in the emergency department and she was diagnosed with a complete heart block. Her ejection fraction, which is the percentage of blood the heart is able to pump throughout the body, was found to be only at 20-25%. Normal value ranges from 55-75%. This prompted physicians to recommend placement of a permanent pacemaker. Due to her low ejection fraction, the pacemaker that is needed isn’t available on Guam, so she would need an off-island transfer to St. Luke’s Hospital in Manila.
Upon arriving in the Philippines and upon evaluation of the cardiologist, she would need an Implantable Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy (CRT) Pacemaker. This device monitors the heart’s rhythm, detects irregularities, and corrects them with electrical impulses. This would enhance the heart’s effectiveness and increase blood flow, which would improve heart failure symptoms. With the CRT pacemaker, it would improve the patient’s quality of life. This specific type of pacemaker ranges in value, but can go as high as 1.2 million PHP or $24,000. Since it is a special type of pacemaker, it is unfortunately not covered by insurance and we would need to come up with the funds for her to have the CRT pacemaker placed.
Josephine Gonzales is a wife, mother of three children, and grandmother to two little boys. She is loved by numerous friends and family. As a family, we are kindly asking for some monetary donations to help with the expenses. We are humbly asking for you to open your hearts to help heal hers. Any help would be greatly appreciated.