Adam's Heart Valve Surgery Blog

Get the latest news, patient advice and insights about heart valve surgery from Adam Pick, patient, author and website founder

Let’s Connect at the Bicuspid Aortic Valve Conference in Chicago Next Tuesday!

Great news! Next Tuesday, September 16, I’ll be speaking at the “Bicuspid Aortic Valve — Beyond The Basics” conference in Chicago. The event, which is hosted by Northwestern Medicine’s Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute and Lurie Children’s Hospital is going to be an incredible experience with several leading BAV specialists including Dr. Puthumana, Dr. Fedak, Dr. Young and Dr. Malaisrie.

Please see the the flyer below for details. To register, click here.Northwestern Bicuspid Aortic Valve Conference

Also, if you have just been diagnosed with a bicuspid valve — which is the most common congenital defect affecting up to 2% of the population — here’s a great educational video about BAV with Dr. Paul Fedak.

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Tai Chi: The Ideal Exercise Option for Heart Surgery Patients?

Doctors perform more than five million heart surgeries every year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These range from stent insertions and open-heart procedures to angioplasties and other cardiovascular procedures. As part of these patients’ recovery plans, many physicians recommend some type of light exercise program. If you’ve undergone heart-related surgery and are looking for a way to be active, tai chi is a terrific option.

Benefits of Tai Chi for Heart Health

Health benefits of tai chi

Over the past several decades, the Chinese martial art known as tai chi has become recognized as an alternative to traditional exercise programs. People of all ages have embraced the low-intensity movements that tai chi offers. As WebMD notes, practicing tai chi on a regular basis can help the body in a number of ways. It improves balance and strength, helps improve mood and reduces chronic pain and discomfort. Tai chi may also help to decrease blood pressure while also boosting cardiovascular function.

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HeartValveSurgery.com Relaunches with 200+ New Features

Great news everybody!!!

Thanks to your excellent feedback, ideas and suggestions, we just relaunched HeartValveSurgery.com with over 200 new features.

HeartValveSurgery.com Relaunches

 

So you know, our team has been working on this project for 10 months. That said, we are very hopeful that this new interactive platform will educate and empower you through heart valve surgery. To help you learn about some of the highlights of the new website, I just posted this video. (For the hearing impaired members of our community, you can read the video transcript posted below.)

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In Memory of Robin Williams, Oscar Winning Actor & Fellow Heart Valve Patient

Just last week, I was talking to Paul, my neighbor, about our ‘Top 5 Actors’ of all time.  With movies like Good Will Hunting, Dead Poets Society, Good Morning Vietnam, and The World According to Garp, the comedian and Oscar-award winning actor, Robin Williams topped my list.

Robin Williams Heart Surgery PatientRobin Williams (1951-2014)

I’m guessing that some of you might think I’m a tad bias towards Robin Williams — considering that he had aortic valve replacement and mitral valve repair surgery in 2009. But, the truth is… Robin Williams’ valvular work, or “plumbing” as he called it, had zero impact on my discussion with Paul.

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“Will An Enlarged Aorta Return to Normal Size After Bicuspid Aortic Valve Replacement?” Asks Mary

I just received several excellent questions from Mary about bicuspid aortic valve replacement, aorta size and heart valve replacement devices. In her email, Mary writes, “Hi Adam – I want to know whether an enlarged aorta returns to normal after bicuspid valve replacement. Also do you have an opinion as to which is better, bovine or mechanical valve. Thank you.”

Enlarged Aortic Root

To help Mary, I contacted Dr. John Kern, who is the Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of Virginia Health System. So you know, Dr. Kern has successfully treated several members from our community including Todd Breeden.

In his response, Dr. Kern first answered Mary’s question about the size of the aorta following a bicuspid aortic valve replacement operation:

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New Patient Posts

The Patient's Guide (7th Revised Edition)

Did you know that over 50,000 patients relied on this 204-page book before heart valve surgery?

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