Grateful Oakwood patient provides legacy gift

Janet Reaume knows all about paying it forward. After receiving a life-saving procedure at the Oakwood Hospital and Medical Center more than a decade ago, Ms. Reaume said she wanted to give back to the community and through the health care system. She recently made a sizable donation in honor of Stelian Marinescu, MD, the cardiologist who saved her life.

“Dr. Marinescu gave me back 10 years and counting,” said Reaume of the legacy gift. “If I can give just one patient as many tomorrows as I have been given, I would feel blessed.”

Reaume suffered from restenosis when she was transported via ambulance to Oakwood. She was treated through radiation brachytherapy, a procedure that had only recently been approved as a treatment for heart disease. It uses tiny radioactive seeds to attack the tissue and reopen the artery. Reaume was among the first patients at Oakwood to receive it.

“In those days, restenosis occurred in about 70 percent of patients who had a stent implanted,” said Dr. Marinescu. “Generally, if it happened once it would happen again. This procedure attacked the tissue that had grown back inside the stent.” 

Radiation brachytherapy is no longer typically used to treat restenosis, but technology has advanced to the point where restenosis is not as common as it was 10 years ago.

Dr. Marinescu, who has been honored with 14 Everyday Hero awards during his time with Oakwood, said he was humbled and pleased when he learned of the donation and thanked Reaume for her generosity.

“This gift is a reflection on Oakwood as a whole and all the people who work here every day,” he said. “Without floor nurses, the Intensive Care Unit and operating room teams, the technicians and so many others, we would not have experienced the successes we’ve had over the years. Delivering excellent care is truly a team effort.”

“This Legacy Gift is a testament to the excellent care that Dr. Marinescu and Oakwood’s cardiology team provides to our patients,” said Carla O’Malley, Executive Director of the Oakwood Foundation. “I hope that the news of this very generous donation will inspire others to make a gift that will help us continue to deliver on our mission.”

CUTLINE: Stelian Marinescu, MD, Janet Reaume and Wave Reaume