Heartfelt Paintings

If Prof Dennis Kuchar’s story is anything to go by, then it’s true that doctors really do make the worst patients!

Having worked as a cardiologist at St Vincent’s Hospital for more than 35 years, Dennis knows the heart better than most. But when he started getting chest pains at the age of 60, he knew instinctively it was angina.

Knowing the risks of surgery, Dennis decided to push on and continue working seven days a week. It wasn’t until Dennis had a terrible angina attack in front of his wife that she took matters into her own hands and called her cardiologist. And so, over the following weeks, he had a stent deployed before undergoing bypass surgery.

“After surgery I didn’t think I would ever get out of bed. I was in so much pain I couldn’t stand. And my mind was in such a state I never thought I would get back to how I’d been before,” Dennis explained.

Rather than talk about the pain, he decided to paint. Having always painted he used this time to process the experience and work on his journey back to good health. He even displayed his works at St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney at the end of last year to raise money for the Cardiac Rehab Unit.

Dennis’ fundraising activities couldn’t have come at a better time, as we rally together to raise awareness of the cardiac services here at St Vincent’s and also raise money for a new Advanced Cardiac Imaging Centre!

Donations are being matched by the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, to help us reach the $7 million needed to build this facility – the first of its kind
in Australia. We expect to begin treating patients in this fantastic new service in 2019.