NFL Great Joe Theisman Talks Aneurysms, Football.
Joe Theisman was a featured guest speaker at the opening reception for the 2012 Current Concepts in Vascular Care, a Sentara hosted mid-Atlantic conference that drew more than 240 vascular surgeons, specialists and professionals.
Theisman works as an advocate to raise awareness for Aortic Abdominal Aneurysms. His personal connection to AAA stems from his late father’s diagnosis of the disease. He told the group of conference attendees about his early assumptions that aneurysms were only found in the brain. His father’s condition opened his eyes and he now promotes screening for the condition, which can often be silent until it is too late.
Theisman mixed humorous anecdotes with moments of more serious reflection about his family, his love of football and the fateful accident that ended his storied NFL career. Grateful for his talents on the field, it was his career-ending broken leg that served as his biggest wake up call. Theisman translates the lessons he learned through that experience to provide wisdom to others. He offered his heartfelt thanks and admiration to the vascular surgeons and medical professionals in the audience. He thanked the healthcare professionals in the room for their dedication to patients. He likened vascular surgeons to the “quarterback” of the operating room. But like the lessons he learned as an NFL quarterback, the team around the quarterback – all working in their various specialties – is just as important to the work of the quarterback to gain success. He told the group that every life saved should serve as their own personal Superbowl trophy.
After some brief remarks, Theisman took questions from the audience and discussed more current events in the NFL. He disagrees with superstar quarterback Tim Tebow’s decision to play for the NY Jets; he thinks RGIII has great potential and will serve the Washington Redskins well; he agrees with the Commissioner’s decision to punish the New Orleans Saints severely for bounty payments; and he thinks Payton Manning will make any team he joins better because, “that is just the kind of player and person he is.”