Health

Siblings from Chickasaw Nation family all undergo heart surgery






In the course of four years, five siblings from the same Chickasaw Nation family have undergone open-heart surgery.

James Mose, 61; Shirley Mose, 59; Dorislene Morgan, 58; Christine Lewis, 56; and Don Mose, 51, count 17 bypasses among them. Their mother and uncle also died of heart attacks and heart problems.

“To have that many family members not only have heart disease, but in the same age range and all five needing bypasses is very unusual,” Dr. John Harvey, president and chief executive of Oklahoma Heart Hospital, told The Oklahoman.

Genetics plays a role -- American Indians are twice as likely to develop heart disease, which is the number one killer in Indian Country. But lifestyle is also a major factor, so the siblings are trying to eat better and exercise more.

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Oklahoma family's five siblings have open-heart surgery in span of four years (The Oklahoman 3/4)