Albuquerque mom given a 'second chance' after frightening close call | KOB 4

Albuquerque mom given a 'second chance' after frightening close call

Casey Torres
June 12, 2019 07:41 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— A 43-year-old mother of two had a close call when she went into cardiac arrest during her pregnancy.


Tina Saenz says she drove herself to Lovelace Women's Hospital in late March after not feeling well for four days. She said she felt like she was drowning and she couldn’t breathe.

“I just remember at that time I kept saying, ‘God, please help me’, because I really felt like I was going to die,” said Saenz.

Her heart rate was at 157. She said her heart was failing, and she needed an emergency c-section, but she wasn’t due until May.

"I was so scared that, (sic) who was gonna be here for my son, for the baby,” she said. "I wanted to be the one to take care of him."

Saenz was taken to Lovelace Heart Hospital after her baby, Adam, was born. Doctors there had to resuscitate her. She woke up four days later.

Dr. Brendan Cavanaugh is a cardiologist and chief medical officer at Lovelace and one of the dozens of people who helped Saenz.

He said he got the call during church and rushed to help her.

"There's things that happen in your life and in your career as a doctor that you'll never forget. This is definitely number one,” he said.

He said Saenz had a rare and severe case of Peripartum Cardiomyopathy. It means Saenz’s heart muscles became weak with hormone shifts.

She's expected to recover, but right now she’s told only 10-percent of her heart works.

"God gave me a second chance, so I better make it good,” said Saenz.


Casey Torres

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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