“It’s nice to have that pillow and know that someone cares about you.”

Ron Sabino grew up in New York City, a melting pot of people from around the world. He made it a point to learn how to say something in different languages. What he didn’t know at the time was how caring people from around the world would offer him a measure of comfort in a time of stress and uncertainty during his open heart surgery recovery.


Ron didn’t know he had a heart condition until one day in early November 2017. He felt tired, more tired than he’d ever felt before and he slept the rest of the day. The next day, he walked to the grocery store to pick up a few items. By the time he walked the few blocks, he was sweating profusely and just didn’t feel right.

He still did his grocery shopping and even ran across the street to get cigarettes for his elderly Armenian neighbor before he finally dialed 911.

It wasn’t until the hospital shot dye into his veins and performed a heart cauterization that they discovered Ron had experienced a heart attack. He needed a triple bypass.

The solution

Ron’s surgeon performed his open heart surgery six days later, and Ron was walking around the hospital floor two days after that. But he had a lot of congestion built up in his chest he needed to expel. Ron-Sabino-Therapeutic-Pillows

Ron’s care team gave him the Shumsky Therapeutic Heart Pillow. He tried to avoid coughing because the pain was unbearable, but when he coughed, the heart pillow helped him manage the pain. That wasn’t the only reason why Ron thinks his pillow is something extra special.

His surgical team and post-surgery care team were their own melting pot, with individuals from around the world dedicated to making Ron healthy again. Each person on his team signed Ron’s heart pillow and wrote a supportive message in his or her native language.

Ron has messages on his pillow in Farsi, Iranian, Persian, Hungarian, Russian, Armenian and Filipino. He feels it’s a wonderful memento from a group of people he knows truly cared about him and making him better.

His advice to others

“I had my tonsils out and things like that in the past and didn’t get anything like [this pillow]. It reminds me of all the people it actually took to perform my surgery and get me well.”

Ron’s surgeon took the time to draw where he performed the bypasses on the heart diagram on Ron’s pillow. He said he thought all hospitals gave out these heart pillows when someone had heart surgery and was surprised to find out some hospitals don’t have them available to patients.

Ron wants other hospitals to know:

“I think they’re foolish because it’s very beneficial. And it shows that someone cares about them.”

Take-away message

Most people take their hearts for granted until something happens, like Ron’s heart attack. For older individuals who might not be close to family, Ron said the pillow shows someone cares.

Whether it’s open heart surgery recovery or any type of surgical procedure, Therapeutic Pillows help patients heal. After surgery, patients keep their therapeutic pillow close because it makes them more comfortable while reducing pain when they cough, breathe deeply or move.

Request a sample and see what your patients say about Shumsky Therapeutic Pillows today.