The National Hockey League (NHL) is not for the faint of heart. For Teppo Numminen, Buffalo Sabres assistant coach and former NHL player, paying attention to his heart made all the difference. Advertising Policy Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland … Read More
Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy
As a young man, Numminen was told by physicians that his heart murmur was nothing to worry about. So he didn’t give it a second thought until he entered the NHL, when he was informed of an abnormal – and leaking – heart valve.
Surgery after 18 seasons in the NHL
Complicating Numminen’s health and career, was the development of an aortic aneurysm that required surgery in 2007.
“Obviously, it was the level at which he was playing ice hockey that increased his risk of the aneurysm bursting or tearing,” said Lars Svensson MD, cardiac surgeon who performed the surgery and is Director of the Aorta Center at Cleveland Clinic.