Dan Kucera is a longtime Rising Sun and TLCA member who is currently in the hospital awaiting heart surgery. Dan is a great friend, father and husband. He is also the main source of income for his family and when he is not working, money is not coming in. Dan would gladly give the last dollar in his pocket to help someone else. The Kucera Family could use our help to get through this difficult time. Here is an update from Dan's wife, Jolene.
This morning I woke up at 5am to Dan shivering on the couch. He woke up feeling fine, but caught a chill he couldn't get rid of and a fever. After 10 minutes he started having trouble catching his breath. A few minutes later I called 911. The EMT's told me he was having a heart attack based on his elevated heart numbers and high heart rate in combination with the shortness of breath (oxygen was at 64) and nausea. They took him to St. Anthony where the doctors told me it didn't appear to be a heart attack but he had lots of fluid on his lungs. His fever came and went. They put him on forced oxygen (a mask that forces oxygen into his lungs). After a chest x-ray and a quick ultrasound, he was transferred to the medical critical care unit.
There the doctors were trying to figure out what was causing the liquid in his lungs. They thought it might be pneumonia and started him on antibiotics. They scheduled an ultrasound of his heart and a chest CAT scan.
When the results of those tests came back, they discovered that Dan has a heart defect (from birth) of the aortic valve that is now failing. They put a monitor from his neck down into his heart. The normal pressure of a heart is around 15 and his is 33. They have "heavily sedated" Dan and put him on a ventilator until they can get the water off of his lungs. After that they will wake him up so he can have open heart surgery (there is a chance they can go in through his groin) to fix the valve.