It is awsome to read your journal, I am scheduled to have AVR on 01/22/13 at DUKE by Dr Glower. I go back and forth on which valve to take. I read your story and lean towards tissue as I am only 38yo. My wife also thinks this is best as we hope technology makes a huge leap forward. Thanks for posting your stories.
I had an opportunity to read your journal today, I'm happy to hear that all went well, I understand this was your second AVR, I may have missed it but what valve did you choose the second time around?
Hey Robert, So you are ready for the launch. All systems are go to the top of the mountain, shine like a star and parachute down the other side. Good luck to you. God will be seeing over your mission. He is the captain and the doctor is the co-pilot. Cant go wrong there. Keep us all posted and God bless.
For the long haul
Nope, nothing wrong with you. Just what Lily said -- plus, you've done your homework, you know what to expect, you've seen all the HVJ folks come through the surgery, And you've already DONE it once! Have that nice, relaxing weekend.
Robert, my co-workers and friends were also more nervous than I. I think it's because we realize we must do what must get done. The resolve is already there. They're also showing their concern by being nervous. I was told that I treated open heart surgery like I was having a wart removed. I just believed that no good could come from being anxious or stressed.
I was reading your journal and wow 22 years on that Bovine Valve is a pretty long time, if you don't mind me asking did you have to take any medicine during those 22 years for your heart? Did you have to watch your activities, such as working out things like that? I meet with my surgeon this Thursday and I know I do not want a mechanical valve and I'm really looking into the Ross Procedure but if I could live a normal life and have my valve last as long as yours maybe it's worth a shot.
Thanks for any feedback you have and good luck with your cath coming up.
I have always believed that we should share the information with the whole family. I think the kids realize something is different when we are holding back. Sometimes its just the fact that there are conversations going on that that are hushed or stop when they enter a room. I have 5 children ranging in age from 37 to 13. I think the imagination is so much worse than the truth. I wouldn't burden them with too much, but I would include them when you know the dates. Okay there was my two cents.
Jane, 13 weeks out and absolutely fine since week 4
How you choose to do this will be a very personal decision. With me and my 6 year old, he knew about a week after I knew. Now I have to admit, what he knows is that daddy needs to have his heart fixed and will feel better after. That means more play time with him!
We've had a couple talks about how I'm going to be slow for a little while after I get home, but no graphic details.
We got a sweet email from his kindergarden teacher. He even told her I'm getting my heart fixed. He is looking forward to it because I'll be able to play more after I heal. Frankly, so am I.
This site has helped me with that because it has taken my worst fears away. For me, those worst fears are fears of the unknown. As I've been told a number of times, we journalers or valvers will always tell you the truth. That way you'll know.
I hope this site helps you with peace of mind as it has helped me.
Robert, I can't offer much advice about when to tell your kids, mine is 41 years old! But check out Jimmy Johnson's journal. His kids are younger I think, but I loved the way he explained to them. I don't think there is a need to tell them too far in advance unless your symptoms are such that it will actually make them feel better that you are going to be fixed. And of course, I don't think they need to have any more detail than just that. You are gonna get fixed!!! Your friends on HVJ site are here for expressing your concerns, fear, anxiety, etc. We all have them at some point and that is what makes this site so wonderful. If you feel it...put it out there. We all have either been there or going through it now.
Good luck, hang in there and just be thankful we can be fixed!!
Theres no right way or wrong way. I told my 10 yr old while I was driving. And for the 20yr old I did it on the phone. My thinking was not to make it so heavy on the kids and myself. I made it out to be no big thing. It's not an easy thing to do but in the end I was right after all was said and done it turn out to be no big thing . On Aug 6th 2010 I had my aortic valve replaced at the Cleveland clinic by Dr. Gillinov.
20 years? That's great! I'm like Chris Dixon, considering a Ross procedure. I will not get a mechanical. Don't want to deal with Coumadin. If they could guarantee me 20 years with a Bovine or Porcine, I'd probably do it. As of now, I'm told 8-10 years on those. I'm only 45. I'm meeting the top Ross surgeon in the country on Thursday in NYC and then will decide.
Best of luck to you. Welcome to HVJ.
Jeff Shebovsky, Orlando, FL
20 years! Not bad!! I'm 38 y/o and currently looking at my 1st, and hopefully only, AVR. Really spending time looking into Ross vs. Mechanical valves. Do you currently have any symptoms? I'm dizzy all the time and can't wait to get my surgery behind me! Hoping to pick a surgeon by the end of February and get this show on the road.