Martin Sheen, the father of Charlie Sheen from Two and a Half Men, is an actor best known for his roles in the dramas Grace and Frankie and The West Wing.
However, during the filming of the psychological war drama Apocalypse Now, the actor developed a significant health illness that would torment him for nearly 40 years.
In addition to Sheen, notable actors Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, and Frederic Forrest participated in the 1979 film. The film, largely inspired by the short novel Heart of Darkness, depicts the story of Captain Benjamin L. Willard (played by Sheen), who travels by river from South Vietnam to Cambodia during the Vietnam War.
Despite the fact that Sheen was in his mid-30s at the time of filming, his heart attack caused the entire production to fall apart since he fell and nearly died before reaching a hospital.
Due to the rural regions where the film was shot, a village doctor supported Sheen in maintaining stability until he could be brought out of the bush.
Francis Ford Coppola, the film’s director, suffered an epileptic seizure one night after convincing himself that he was to be responsible for the disaster, adding to Sheen’s near-fatal health ordeal.
According to the NHS, a heart attack is a critical medical emergency when the heart’s blood supply is unexpectedly cut off.
Coronary heart disease (CHD), a disorder in which the major blood arteries supplying the heart become clogged with cholesterol plaque deposition, is the primary cause of heart attacks in the United Kingdom.
Before a heart attack, one of these plaques will rupture, causing a blood clot to form at the location of the rupture. A heart attack could occur due to the clot potentially reducing the blood supply to the heart.
Other less common causes of a heart attack include hypoxia, substance abuse, and spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) (a sudden drop in oxygen levels in the body).
The symptoms of a heart attack differ from person to person. The British Heart Foundation (BHF) does, however, highlight several of them, including:
Chest pain or discomfort that occurs unexpectedly and lasts
Pain that spreads to your neck, jaw, back, stomach, or left or right arm.
Some people experience extreme pain or tightness, while others simply experience discomfort. It could be heavy or stinging, akin to indigestion.
Feeling nauseous, hot, dizzy, or out of breath.
Because a heart attack is a medical emergency, phoning 911 and requesting an ambulance is important. While waiting for an ambulance, the NHS suggests chewing and swallowing one aspirin tablet. This promotes blood thinning and boosts heart-healthy blood flow.
The therapy for a heart attack after admission to the hospital varies depending on the severity of the episode. The two primary approaches are as follows:
Using drugs to break up blood clots
Surgery to restore blood flow to the heart.
Sheen returned to the set three weeks after recovering from a heart attack. Sheen’s heart problems lingered 36 years later.
Emilio Estevez, Sheen’s 75-year-old son, posted on Facebook that his father had quadruple bypass surgery.
“The decision to operate on his heart was proactive, not reactive,” according to the statement.
“With my mother Janet and the rest of our family by his side, and under the supervision of his outstanding team of cardiologists, doctors, and nurses, my father took on this challenge with remarkable courage, fortitude, and humility.”
“Not surprisingly, he is doing incredibly well, has been released from the ICU, and is expected to fully recover by returning to work on Grace and Frankie season three on Netflix early the following year.”
According to the British Heart Foundation, coronary bypass surgery alleviates chest pain. During the procedure, surgeons use blood vessels from your leg, arm, or chest to bypass (go around) a restricted coronary artery.
One of the advantages of the process is that it aims to remove angina discomfort in patients.
Most patients require a six to eight-day hospital stay following a coronary artery bypass transplant.
According to the NHS, most patients should be able to walk after three days, sit in a chair after one day, and ascend and descend stairs after five to six days.
A coronary artery bypass transplant, like any other type of surgery, has the potential for problems. These are frequently modest and manageable, such as an erratic heartbeat or a wound infection. However, there is a chance of major side effects such as a heart attack or stroke.
It is critical to note that a coronary artery bypass graft does not treat coronary heart disease. If people with CHD do not also make lifestyle adjustments, like eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly, their transplanted arteries will eventually harden and narrow.