Texas man credits walking program in helping with recovery after heart attack

Tim Dorn considers himself lucky to be alive. 

In 2016, Tim had a massive heart attack. He was home alone when he started experiencing chest and shoulder pain. He took two aspirin, hoping the pain would stop. As the discomfort intensified, Tim managed to call his father-in-law for help. 

“I suffered what doctors call the widowmaker,” Tim said. 

A “widowmaker” heart attack occurs when the left anterior descending (LAD) artery, which supplies blood to the larger, front part of the heart, is blocked. In Tim’s case, 90% of his LAD artery was clogged. He survived, but his recovery was challenging.

“I was on so much medication, extremely tired and I had zero energy,” he said. “I felt 120 years old.”

Tim was determined to return to a sense of normalcy. Three weeks after his heart attack, Tim received the all clear from his doctor to resume his daily routine, which included taking daily strolls. 

He also had added motivation to get moving. Before the heart attack, he had enrolled in a walking program through this employer: UnitedHealthcare Motion®. The wearable device well-being program provides incentives to members for walking. For Tim, walking became instrumental in his recovery.

“I walked every day, even inside my house,” Tim said. “My heart specialist told me it was the absolute best thing I could do for my health. A few steps made a huge difference.” 

Through walking programs, like UnitedHealthcare Motion, participants may earn financial incentives toward out-of-pocket medical expenses, for meeting certain wellness goals. These programs may help keep participants physically active by creating more engagement and higher intensity fitness goals. 

“I tell everyone about walking programs,” Tim said. “Every step makes me stronger. It is absolutely wonderful and simple. Just walk.”

Click here to learn more about UnitedHealthcare Motion. For information on different health insurance options, please visit UHC.com.