Services & Specialties

Adena Health Cardiology Patient: ‘I owe my life to Adena’

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Barbara Rasmussen wasn’t aware of the danger she was in when, after undergoing a stress test in preparation for a scheduled surgery, she received a phone call informing her that an Adena Health cardiologist wanted to see her the next morning.

She wasn’t sure what it could be about, having not experienced any pain, fatigue, or other symptoms of a possible heart-related condition.

“I didn’t think anything of it, I just figured there must be something they needed to re-check,” the 72-year-old Chillicothe resident said.

She was informed upon arrival that something unexpected had turned up in her stress test and agreed to undergo a catheterization to get a closer look at the vessels leading to the heart. Cardiologist Hafeez Hassan, MD, then provided her with a detailed explanation of what was discovered and that a stent had to be placed to open up the main artery to the heart – an artery often referred to as a widowmaker – because it was almost completely blocked and was collapsing.

Barbara said she owes her life to Dr. Hassan, praising his approach, skill, caring and commitment to her as a patient.

“Dr. Hassan was so good,” Barbara said. “He’s got such a great bedside manner. He was very calm and efficient. Not only did he explain everything well to me, but he was on call and he came into my recovery room three times during the night. Dr. Hassan knew I couldn’t sleep in the hospital, so he came it to see if I was doing all right and to make sure I was calm and comfortable.”

Barbara got a better sense of just how precarious her situation had been when she went in for her six-month post-procedure checkup. She asked to see the images of what her artery looked like at the time of the surgery and she saw it appeared flat.

“I thought, wow, what a miracle, and Dr. Hassan told me that they didn’t even know how I had been able to walk in to the hospital,” Barbara remembered, then referenced the church-based origins of Adena Health’s founding. “I told him that I know this is a Christian place and this is my favorite place to go for care. My doctor is here, my specialists are here, and I know God is here in this hospital because He’s the one who brings patients to the hospital who really need the service. Just look at me, I had a widowmaker and didn’t even know it.”

Barbara has relied upon Adena Health for not only her wellness visits but also for a gallbladder removal and treatment for breast cancer since she move to Chillicothe several years ago from Wisconsin. Her experience with Dr. Hassan only reinforced her belief in the importance of the health system to the communities it serves.

“I tell everybody that I owe my life to Adena,” Barbara said. “I tell them they should be glad they have a facility that’s this close to home and this good. I lived in an area of Wisconsin where it was 80 miles to the nearest doctor and you couldn’t even get a helicopter during the winter because you’d get six feet of snow, so a lot of times, they couldn’t save you there.

“I love my care team at Adena, and I really love Dr. Hassan. He cares about his patients, does a great assessment of the problem and then can take care of it. There’s nobody else I would have wanted to see. To be saved from a widowmaker? That’s a miracle.”

Watch Barb's story on YouTube.


Adena Health provides advanced cardiac services in Chillicothe, Circleville, Greenfield, Jackson, Washington Court House, and Waverly. For more about Adena’s cardiac program, its providers and full range of services, visit