Martha Russel Greer
One night, Martha woke up in the middle of the night with a sharp pain in the pit of her stomach. “Really bad stomach ache,” she thought to herself. By the next morning, she was feeling better and wondered if she had some sort of a stomach virus. Then as the day went on, the pain came back and was even more intense.
“I’m a healthy person. I had no other symptoms. I was not nauseated, no headache, nothing…just a really bad pain in my stomach,” Martha said. After discussing with her husband, they decided to go to Natchitoches Regional Medical Center’s Walk-in Clinic.
Martha saw Nurse Practitioner Tina Johnson. “I explained that I was fine the day before and that suddenly I had this stomach ache. She listened to everything I told her, and then said it may not be my stomach. She said my pulse was fast and wondered if I was having a problem with my heart. She said sometimes women have different symptoms than men do,” Martha said.
At the Walk-in Clinic, Martha had an EKG which showed an irregular heartbeat, so Tina sent Martha to the NRMC Emergency Department. “They drew blood and other tests to see if I was having a heart attack, and they did a CT scan of my stomach and it looked fine,” Martha explained. “I was admitted to the hospital for an irregular heartbeat, and my cardiologist, Dr. Christopher Ingram, diagnosed me with Atrial Fibrillation. They gave me medication to prevent blood clots, and at one point they had to shock my heart back into rhythm.”
Martha spent several nights in the hospital, but is doing fine now. “I’m on medicine to keep my heart beating as it should,” Martha said. “I’m so grateful Tina Johnson had the forethought, knowledge and experience to recognize that I was having a heart issue, and that she got me to the ER at NRMC. If I would have stayed at home or been sent home with some stomach medicine, no telling what could have happened. Dr. Ingram said she kept me from having a stroke.”
“I’m so grateful Tina Johnson had the forethought, knowledge and experience to recognize that I was having a heart issue, and that she got me to the ER at NRMC”
Martha spent 37 years in law enforcement, and she values professionalism, dedication, and expertise. She also realizes that people who work in service to others do not hear the words “thank you” often enough. “I want to tell Tina, and the ER team, and Dr. Ingram thank you for all that they did. I have great respect for the care they are providing our community. And I will always be grateful to Tina for her professionalism and expertise. I might not be here today had it not been for her experience, training and judgment,” Martha noted.