10-year-old Ohio State fan tells cardiac surgeon not to make him a Michigan fan

Before undergoing cardiac surgery a 10-year-old Ohio boy asked his Michigan doctor if the staff was going to make his Buckeye-loving heart into a Wolverine-worshipping one.

“He asked if the Michigan doctors were going to make his heart love University of Michigan instead of Ohio State,” Jennifer Applin, Ivan Applin’s mother, told University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital’s blog.

Ivan’s surgeon, Dr. Ronald Grifka, assured him that not only would he wake up still rooting for the Buckeyes, but the procedure would help to better enjoy his favorite physical activities like soccer.

Ivan is one of the first patients in Michigan to receive a newly-FDA-approved device used to repair a heart defect known as atrial septal defect. The condition causes holes in the heart which interferes with blood flow to organs, according to the blog. The device, called Cardioform, is made out of a synthetic, permeable fabric over a thin wire frame and acts like a plug designed to close the holes in the heart.

Grifka and his team performed a cardiac catheterization, placing a small catheter into a vein in Ivan’s leg that allowed it to advance into his heart. He was walking, talking and eating the same day, and was discharged the next. He will be able to return to normal activities within a few weeks.

“We were glad Ivan could benefit from this procedure at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital. Technology is continuing to evolve to give us greater options that reduce the need for surgical procedures and minimize risk of complications,” Grifka told the blog.

“Our emphasis is always on ensuring our patients have access to the most advance treatments available. We’re pleased to be able to add this device to the array of options we’re able to work with to best meet the needs of patients like Ivan safely and effectively,” he said.

Ivan’s mother told the blog that he’s now focused on reaching his last day of recovery so he can start getting ready for his first soccer practice.