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Rodney, 78, Offers Praise For Dr. Chitwood After Heart Valve Surgery

Posted by Adam Pick on July 25th, 2009

As many of you know, I started this website to educate, inspire and empower patients with heart valve disorders including mitral regurgitation, aortic stenosis, etc.

Three years later… It turns out that I am the one who is inspired by the patient stories of Randy, Sylvia, Patricia, Anita, Robin, Charles, John, Leslie, Steve, Jonathan, Mavis and so many others. Each one of these patient stories (shared previously in this blog) radiate the extraordinary human will to face heart valve disease and rise above it.

On that note, Rodney from North Carolina just emailed me his story. At 78 years of age, Rodney is currently in the middle of his recovery. Here is what he writes:


This is to let you know I underwent aortic valve surgery and one bypass at the new heart hospital in Greenville, North Carolina on June 1, 2009. Dr. Randolph Chitwood, MD, who is recognized as one of the outstanding heart surgeons in country, performed the surgery.

Rodney Trueblood – Heart Valve Replacement Patient

I came through with flying colors. After a week in the hospital, I was transferred by ambulance to Guardian Care Nursing Home in Elizabeth City, North Carolina where I live. I am 78, widowed and live alone, so was unable to take care of myself at home.

I am still feeling some pain from the incision, but take Tylenol which relieves problem.  I did not want to get hooked on pain medication Percocet, as you did with Vicodin.

Yesterday, I saw Dr. Chitwood for my follow-up. He released me to my local cardiologist. He also said I could drive again and resume normal activity.  My only restrictions are not lifting anything over 30 pounds or going swimming.

Dr. Randolph Chitwood - Rodney’s Surgeon

I just wanted to thank you again for your excellent heart valve surgery book which detailed what to expect before and after surgery.  It was a big help to me. I also really appreciate your blogs, which are quite informative.

Keep up the good work and… Keep on tickin’! :)

Rodney Trueblood
North Carolina

Adam Pick
Written by Adam Pick A dad, a husband and a patient, Adam Pick founded this website in 2006 to educate you about heart valve surgery from diagnosis to recovery.
You can get the latest updates about heart valve surgery from Adam at his Facebook, and Twitter pages. Click here to email him.


Sara says on July 25th, 2009 at 1:06 pm

Go Rodney Go!!!!



Sean R. says on July 25th, 2009 at 6:34 pm

Hi, Rodney.
I am very pleased to hear you’re doing so well! I live in Greensboro, so I considered Dr. Chitwood, having heard so much about him. I opted for Duke, which is a little closer, and had a great experience – and surgeon – there. I had my aortic valve replaced last year with a bovine valve, at age 60, so I know I’ll probably need another replacement surgery when I’m in my 80′s, perhaps. So it’s great to see someone your age looking and feeling so well after surgery! Maybe I’ll get Dr. Chitwood to do the next one! I hope you can return to swimming soon. (I had to wait 3 months.)
Best regards,


Marlane Holtshouse says on July 26th, 2009 at 7:03 pm

Rodney, What wonderful news. I’m having my aortic valve replaced by Dr. Vincent Gaudiani in San Fran on August the 6th and I certainly hope I do as well as you did. I’m 66 and pretty healthy otherwise. I will be traveling from Tucson AZ to hae this done. Keep me in your prayers. Marlane


Marlane Holtshouse says on July 26th, 2009 at 7:07 pm

Go Rodney, keep up the good work. Marlane


Emily says on July 28th, 2009 at 3:45 pm

Saw you in the article. Very good. I am very relieved that you have come through this successfully.


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