OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – A 17-year-old former soccer player is looking forward to resuming his college plans after having a successful new kind of open-heart surgery never been done before at Oklahoma Children’s Hospital OU Health.

“It was scary. We had never gone through something like this,” said Athor Martinez.

Besides the scar on his chest, you’d never know Martinez had open-heart surgery a month ago.

A year earlier, at his annual physical, his doctor found something unusual.

“The physician said that she heard a murmur in his heart,” said Martinez’s mother, Claudia Barcenas.

The 17-year-old’s family learned the competitive soccer player had been born with a congenital heart defect. Martinez had just made the varsity team and could no longer play.

“It was a really scary moment for all of us, the family,” said Barcenas. “My mind just went crazy.”

The doctors told them the fix was open-heart surgery on his aortic valve, which can take weeks to recover from. However, a new procedure being studied in New England was showing promising results. It had never been done at Oklahoma Children’s Hospital OU Health.

“In November, he called us again and said that there was this new technique that they were doing out of the country that instead of replacement they [could restore] the valve,” said Barcenas.

“The day before they were like, ‘Oh, we’re going to watch or someone is going to talk to us about the procedure cause we’ve never done this.’ I was like, “Oh? Okay… haha. That’s good!’ But no, I felt really comfortable with everything,” said Martinez.

After being sedated for five hours, Athor woke up. The surgery was a success.

Since the procedure went off without a hitch, the hospital said it could now offer it to patients just like Athor.

“I feel really good that this is now like an option for more people,” said Athor. “So, they don’t have to go through other surgeries, more surgeries.”

Athor’s family said they’re excited to see what the future holds for Athor, even if that means going out of state for college. If everything continues to go this well, he may be able to play soccer again.

“I feel like I’m ready to go and conquer the world or something,” said Athor.