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Missouri woman diagnosed with heart disease through new testing at Saint Luke’s

Dawn Paitz
Posted at 5:16 PM, Feb 27, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Recent developments in testing and diagnoses are giving answers to patients who have waited years to know what’s causing their chest pain.

Dawn Paitz, 56, suffered debilitating chest pain for months, sometimes landing her in the hospital.

She continued to push for a cause of her pain, even after doctors near the Lake of the Ozarks told her testing for heart disease came back negative.

“I knew something was wrong; I just knew it,” Paitz said. “It is so important for women to not stop when they know something is wrong. I think we know our bodies the best."

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After moving to Kansas City to be closer to her loved ones, Paitz found herself at Saint Luke’s after yet another round of horrible chest pain.

Again, traditional testing came back negative for heart disease.

Doctors referred Paitz to the Mid America Heart Institute at Saint Luke’s on the Country Club Plaza where she underwent a new kind of testing to search for ANOCA, or angina with no obstructive coronary arteries.

Dr. Dany Jacob, an interventional cardiologist at the hospital, found Paitz has this form of heart disease, which typically goes undetected for years before a diagnosis.

“I felt validated and confirmed that I have heart disease, it’s just different than others,” Paitz said.

She is now encouraging other woman to listen to their bodies when they are in pain.

Jacob said giving patients a diagnosis they have been searching for motivates him to continue to develop testing and treatment.

“The biggest message is that you are not alone,” Jacob said. “There are a lot of patients out there we are identifying and helping them improve their quality of life. So don’t give up. We can find an answer and do our best to improve your quality of life.”

Saint Luke’s is the first and only hospital in the region offering ANOCA testing technology.