Do Patients Make Lemon Out Of Heart Valve Surgery Lemonade?
When it comes to heart valve surgery, I know that the human spirit is resilient, creative and inspiring.
“What the hell is Adam writing about?” you may be wondering.
Well, hold on now! Give me a moment to explain.
Everyone I know will experience many obstacles in life. For me, one of those low-points was the day my cardiologist told me that my heart was dilated and I needed aortic valve replacement.
“Ya-ya-ya-ya-ya mean, oh-oh-oh-oh-open heart sur-sur-sur-surgery?” I queried my heart doctor in stuttering disbelief.
In that moment, a unique fear struck me. Maybe it struck you too? Several questions pulsed through my conscious – “Am I going to die?” “Will I surf again?” “How long will I be out of work?”
And lastly… “Why… Oh… Why… Did I get a lemon for a heart?” (Okay, maybe the thought wasn’t that dramatic.)
Well… That was over twenty-two months ago. Guess what? I did not die. I am surfing again. And, my high tech consulting business is on turbo drive. Plus, I got married to wonderful woman!!!
In looking back on the heart valve surgery experience, I can definitely say my life is better today than it was before surgery. Yes. The experience was physically and mentally tough on me and my family. (That recovery can be a real doozy.)
But, as the cliche goes… Nothing in life of value is free or easy.
That said, I wanted to know more. I wanted to know if heart valve surgery was a positive chapter in other patients’ book of life. So, earlier this year, I conducted an online survey of many former patients. I asked a very simple question to the patients, “On a scale of 1 (negative change) to 10 (positive change), how would you score the impact of heart valve surgery on your life?
As you can see below, the results are amazing!!!
Over 46% of former heart valve surgery patients scored that question with a perfect “10”. Taken one step further, over 88% of patients scored the question to positive side of the spectrum.
In light of this survey, it appears that most heart valve surgery patients are turning lemon into lemonade.
Keep on tickin!
Adam Pick is a patient, author of The Patient's Guide To Heart Valve Surgery and the founder of HeartValveSurgery.com.