In real life, his youngest daughter was turning three that very day.
What should have been a time for celebration quickly took a turn when Ritter began complaining of the classic symptoms of a heart attack: he was sweaty, nauseous and experiencing pain in his chest.
As seen on the JRF’s website, the Ritter Rules are: URGENCY: Thoracic aortic dissection is a medical emergency.
The death rate increases 1% every hour the diagnosis and surgical repair are delayed. Seek immediate emergency medical care for a sudden onset of severe pain in the chest, stomach, back or neck.
Shortly after his passing, Ritter’s wife, the actress Amy Yasbeck, formed The John Ritter Foundation (JRF), a charity devoted to educating people about aortic dissection and providing support to those affected by the disease.
Through the JRF, a set of guidelines—the Ritter Rules—was established to help recognize, diagnose and prevent aortic dissections.
Only three types of imaging studies can identify aortic aneurysms and dissections: CT, MRI and transesophageal echocardiogram.
Note: A chest x-ray or EKG cannot rule out aortic dissection.
Like other arteries, the Aorta is essentially a hollow tube that carries blood away from the heart.
You and other family members should be evaluated to determine if a predisposition for aortic aneurysm and dissection is running in your family.
RISK FACTOR: Certain genetic syndromes that affect connective tissue put you at risk.
Just six days shy of his 55th birthday, John Ritter—the Emmy-award winning sitcom star—wasn’t feeling quite right.
Ritter, best known for playing the rakish Jack Tripper on the 70s/80s television classic “Three’s Company,” was rehearsing lines on the set of his latest show, “8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter.” On the program, Ritter played the stern-but-loving father to a pair of teenage girls.