Annual physical saves life of Glendale firefighter

An annual physical led staff at the Glendale Fire Department Health Center to refer Firefighter Dennis Dorrance to a cardiologist. He was then accurately diagnosed with coronary artery disease. (Submitted photo)

The next time you think about whether to get an annual physical, remember this: The life of a Glendale firefighter was saved by one.

Dennis Dorrance is a Glendale firefighter who had been experiencing shortness of breath and fatigue while on and off duty. He had seen a doctor and was incorrectly diagnosed with asthma.

While at his annual routine physical at the Glendale Fire Department Health Center, the staff noticed some cardiac abnormalities. They immediately referred Mr. Dorrance to a cardiologist.

He was then ordered to have a HeartFlow Analysis done. The result: an accurate diagnose of coronary artery disease.

Within minutes, the cardiologist scheduled Mr. Dorrance for a cardiac procedure. Mr. Dorrance was barely able to walk into the hospital without feeling short of breath.

“By the time he left he felt like a new man. A couple of hours later, Dennis had a new lease on life,” Glendale Fire stated. “If it weren’t for the detection through the health center Dennis may not have had such a favorable outcome. It is imperative with the hazards that firefighters face today that we have an annual physical to detect life threatening health issues, like heart disease and cancers that plague our profession.”

“There’s no doubt in my mind that HeartFlow Analysis saved my life,” Mr. Dorrance stated. “I feel like I am 30 years old again.”

Click here to see more about Mr. Dorrance’s story and HeartFlow.

Glendale Fire says firefighters are like professional athletes and must train for the worse possible scenarios.

“Our bodies must be ready for whatever task lies ahead,” a release states. “The moment the tones go off we could be putting our bodies into astronomical temperatures or climbing flights of stairs with hundreds of pounds of gear and tools.

“The demands on our bodies can be at a moment’s notice and we have got to be ready. Our bodies are our tools, and our physicals are the inspections our tools need to stay ready to perform.

“Thankfully Dennis’s story has a happy outcome. With more early detection of disease and good health screenings we can continue to have positive outcomes.”

Editor’s Note: Information from the Glendale Fire Department.

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