Bob Lamb has always loved the outdoors. The Traverse City man along with his wife, Mary have lived on the shores of Silver Lake for 63 years. Everything from water skiing to snowmobiling with his family and friends are Lamb's passions.
"I'd ride 250 miles a day lots of times when I was in my late 70's and didn't think anything of it," says Lamb.
Lately though, things have slowed down for the 87-year-old World War II veteran, who once even qualified as an expert swimmer while he was in the Navy.
"My routine was always go-go-go! Everybody told me someday I'd slow down, but I learned the hard way," says Lamb.
In the past several months, Lamb suffered two strokes which slowed down his once active lifestyle.
"I was losing my strength and almost passed out a couple of times," says Lamb.
During that time, Lamb's doctors were also monitoring what's known as: an abdominal aortic aneurysm for about three years. It was a bulge that happened in the the aorta, the largest artery in the body. The aorta carries the blood out of the heart to other organs and extends down into the abdomen. The aneurysm was starting to cause serious problems.
"They're very serious because many times we don't know somebody has them, so they can present acutely. That's why screening is so important to screen patients that have aneurysms in their family," says vascular surgeon at Munson Medical Center, Dr. William Ranger.
Dr. Ranger said the best plan of attack for Lamb was a fairly new procedure called a fenestrated stent graft on an abdominal aortic aneurysm. It involved a custom-designed stent to repair the aneurysm. It was also the first of its kind at Munson.
"The stents get made all the way in Australia now with 3D imaging can locate it better in different locations. That's why holes and stents have to be measured very precisely. They're custom-made," says Dr. Ranger.
Lamb had the surgery done in December 2012 and he says it was something that literally changed his life.
"Well, I know it's going to make my life longer because I couldn't keep going on that way, with all those problems," says Lamb.
For more information on the fenestrated stent graft surgery at Munson Medical Center, click here.