When 19-year-old Daniel Tamburro from West Midlands, UK was experiencing heartburn, he never expected that the symptom meant anything more than indigestion. But the mild pain he was feeling actually indicated something far more severe, and in this case, even life-threatening: The teen had a grapefruit-sized cyst encroaching on his heart, forcing it three centimeters out of place, according to the Daily Mail.
When Daniel collapsed at work in June, he was rushed to the hospital, where doctors told him that the cyst was so severe it would have caused his heart to explode had it been left untreated.
"Doctors told me it was like dodging a seven inch bullet. I’m surprised to be alive today," he said to the Daily Mail.
Through a six-hour long operation, doctors were able to remove the cyst. Now, after months of recovery, the teen has returned to work and is feeling back up to speed.
Although Daniel's case is certainly unusual, heart problems are on the rise for young people. A study released in May found that one in four adolescents has two or more risk factors for heart disease, and that one in three healthy-weight teens is at risk for heart disease. Another recent study has found that early puberty may also increase the risk of heart disease for women.