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82-Year-Old Has ‘No Fear’ After Getting New Watchman Heart Device

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At 82, Theodora Clifford feels she has years of fun left since a small balloon device was implanted in her heart. She was among the Valley’s first 100 patients to receive a Watchman to reduce her risk of stroke from atrial fibrillation, better known as an irregular heartbeat.

“I didn’t have the energy that I have today,” she says. “Today I’m able to walk every day. And I feel so much better just knowing I don’t have that fear of having a stroke — and that’s all due to the Watchman.”

She called her cardiologist Chandrasekar Palaniswamy a “true pioneer” and adds, “I was just thrilled to death to get this Watchman right here in the Valley.”

Dr. Palaniswamy, along with cardiology colleagues Kevin Boran and Thampi John, did the first Watchman procedure in the Valley in February 2018, and Community Medical Centers hospitals have helped more than 170 patients so far with the Watchman.

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