Iron Man Competitor Undergoes Lifesaving Lung Surgery While Visiting Baltimore

For immediate release: July 24, 2014

When Kristen Balla, a resident of Richmond, Virginia, agreed to meet her best friend in Baltimore for a spur-of-the-moment reunion, she didn’t expect to also visit the emergency room a few blocks from where she was staying. Kristen, an avid runner, was unknowingly living with a pulmonary embolism – a dangerous blood clot in her lungs. It was her healthy, active lifestyle and her proximity to the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC), however, that ultimately ended up saving her life.

Dr. Murtaza Dawoodassistant professor of surgery, performed a pulmonary embolectomy to remove the blood clot and restore her circulation. Surgery for pulmonary embolisms is often considered a last resort reserved for the most severe, emergent cases. In Kristen’s case, time was of the essence, and surgeons needed to intervene quickly before it was too late.

Continue reading Kristen's story and view photos