Thanks Thomas. I think I am in almost the identical situation. I am 38 also. I just cannot decise on mechanical or tissue. I appreciate your thoughts on this. I ask myself if I would be better off trying the mechanical and getting on with my life or tissue and hope to have perc procedures better in the future. I am glad to hear that you have not had a tuff time with Coumadin, does it stay reqular? Does the St jude valve have a chance of requiring a lower INR level? Again thanks, getting nervous about this as time is coming closer to doing the procedure.
Awesome to read how good you are doing. I am set for surgery on 01/22/13 at DUKE MC,I go back and forth on which valve to get. How did you decide and is the Coumadin dosing going good,how long did it take to control? Thank you.
What a great anniversary entry--and so much covered in so short a time. Thanks for letting me know on my guestbook that after a year you still have a pink area at the bottom of the incision. I do remember when my kidney was removed 29 years ago that the incision stayed purple for so long I thought it would never fade, and now, despite the fact that it goes around half my body, it's so faint it's hard to see.
Let us know how you do with the marathon. I must confess, I'm not as eager to sweat as I was before I hit 70--artificial knees and repaired feet don't help! And, my cardio said I absolutely must NOT return to my routine with the personal trainer of the heavy weight lifting. Oh, well, the local Y has a good program for septegenarians!
Again, best of luck in your future, and may your valve beat all the odds and last 60 years! Either that or miraculous new procedures get developed.
Hi Thomas, My brother in law Tom Molz just had the dame surgery. He has a page here. I just read your journal and am so blessed. You gave me some things to pray about for Tom's recovery. Thanks so much for your courageous journey and sharing with everyone. I pray continued good health for you and your family for many years to come.
Blessings, Wanda Garnes
I cannot believe after all these years that I am just browsing through some names in my annuals and I type in yours. I couldn't believe it was really you. I never knew that you had heart problems in school. I read your journal and story. It is amazing. I am glad that you're OK now and doing well. You have a beautiful family. I hope to hear from you, I sent you a friend request on facebook. Stay healthy.
Thanks for the message on my guestbook. I'm interested to know if you've had any problems with the blood thinner? How often do you have to get your levels checked? Also what restrictions did they place on you because of the blood thinner when your recovery is complete? Are you going to have to make any lifestyle changes? Also do you hear the clicking of the valve?
You've said recovery has been like a roller-coaster.
I'm just hoping that my valve will last as long as it can and then hopefully there have been improvements in the blood thinners or surgery itself. I have a bit of a needle phobia (I'm working on that though) so getting my blood checked a lot is not something I look forward to. Obviously, I will want to have the surgery as few times as possible.
Thanks again for responding. If you have facebook, just look me up at email@example.com, too.
Boy, you've really been through the mill. I had to look up Pericarditis and definitely not pleasant. I hate to be educated at another's expense. I will be praying you get on your feet AGAIN really soon and enjoy that trip west with the family. You all need some fun. Cheryl, Ontario
Hey Thomas, I hope you get off that rollercoaster soon and can just spend some time on the merry-go-round. Seriously, we are praying for your complete recovery and hope that you can get back to 100% soon. We are all so blessed to have Jeff in our lives--I know you have complete confidence in him, and so do we. Take care, and please let us know if you (or Kim) need anything. Get well soon! Gina Jefferies
I was just checking your latest post (since I kinda got lost during the hospital days), and I noted your kind words about me and you encouraging people to check out my journal. That was so amazingly awesome of you! Thank you! You know, I think we needed every single prayer offered up on our behalf. Even though it was truly a roller coaster ride, we always felt God's presence and peace in an indescribable way. Though I'm certainly glad to be on this side of it all, and I'm begging God for no more setbacks, even though it was a difficult time, it was a precious time. Hope you guys are doing well. I saw that your family had all gotten the flu. Bummer! Hope your sternum was healed up enough to handle that. How has it been for you going back to work? You guys are just really precious people, and I am grateful for your friendship and support.
Was checking up on you and see you've had the flu or some such thing. Couldn't imagine adding that to an already ailing body but glad you are seeing the bright side now. Good luck on your follow-up. I'm four months post-op tomorrow and have been plagued by an irregular heart beat so hopefully when I see the cardiologist on Tuesday he'll have something reassuring to say. Hearing something reassuring from the cardiologist does help greatly. What are you doing for your rehab? So far I'm just on the treadmill once a week at rehab and almost every day at home. I've been keeping track of Duane's and Richard's progress daily. Looks as if both have turned a positive corner thank goodness. Continued success in your recovery. Cheryl, Ontario
Well, here I go, 6 weeks after you! Peggy and I are busy bees getting everything ready to leave for Orlando first thing in the morning. Though it's all still overwhelming, I'm relieved it's finally here. You can only stand the anticipation for so long! Thanks for your friendship, support, and prayers, buddy! You and Kim have been in many ways and at many times a lifeline, and we are grateful. May you continue to experience God's full grace and healing! I look forward to your updates when I resurface. Off I go!
Mike wants to know if you are available for a playdate next week. He's good company, if you like talkers. Pool, darts, swing dancing, putt-putt, real golf, tennis, handstands contests, cards, and jumpity-jump are all out of the question though. : )
I get the same looks at rehab makes you feel like a little kid that did something wrong. I have been keeping them wondering why I am there at such a young age it's driving them nuts I'm going to play the game for a couple of weeks ........
Good to see you are making a speedy recovery. Doesn't time fly when you're having fun? No doubt you'll be able to start driving again soon and then you'll really feel whole. Getting back into my own car was one of the best feelings in the world. I even had tears when I was driving just feeling so thankful to be whole again.
Glad you are doing rehab. Cheryl, Ontario
Try allrecipes for recipes. Benjamin is on a special diet too, so I know what you mean! Even the dang canned soup is sometimes mostly high fructose corn syrup. I am shocked about what we regularly put in our bodies! Trying to eat healthier and cook. It is hard to do with a buncha kids and a busy life!!!
When I saw your Vanderbilt pillow, I knew I had to write to you. I had mitral valve replacement surgery in April '09 at Vanderbilt with Dr. John Byrne. I completed the cardiac rehab program at Decatur General Hospital (AL) in August. At my eighth week after surgery, my appetite came back with a vengeance, so be ready; you don't want to overeat! Your comment about sodium is right on. The dietitian in my rehab program really emphasized monitoring sodium intake, and it's in almost ALL of our foods in EXCESSIVE amounts. Sounds like you are on a good track to recovery. Just take it one day at a time. Adam's book and web site really helped me. I'm back at work now and am working on getting my Class III FAA medical back so I can fly as a Private Pilot again.
Its such a pleasure reading about our progress. I know I will be able to do it, too. I'm not good on stairs yet. Must have been terrific to get out. I haven't been outside at all yet. Keep pushing the envelope!
St. Peters, MO
Great to hear you are sleeping now and were able to get out of the house for a bit. Sat with your Big Bro. Mike at the game last night and got your take on Kiffin leaving. I agree, hope he loses his *** on selling out! lol Hope to get to see you and your family soon. Keeping you in my prayers.
Hi Thomas, I am happy to see your journal. I have your same diagnosis. (Older and a female) I have an appointment with Dr Petracek on Friday. I know he is the best! I live near Nashville. I am so thankful for your progress and the encouragement it gives me. Blessings to you and your family.
Hi Thomas, Wow, in just 26 days, look how far you've come! I'm so glad you are feeling better and able to get out of the house some. That must help with the "stir craziness." I pray that you get stronger and stronger each day and as you begin your rehab. Becky
I am sorry to read you are not resting well. That definitely makes things more difficult to deal with when lack of sleep is a factor. I think of you every day and hope time will take care of some of these issues. Hoping tomorrow is a better day - 2010 is around the corner. Here's to a NEW YEAR! Julie Ford & family
I have a feather duvet, king-size. You could double it and put it on your recliner. It might help and it is warm too. If it works you can use it as long as you like. It has never been used and it is really fluffy. Let me know!
Glad to hear you had a good Christmas and am so thankful to hear you are home and doing better. I have really been glad to be able to keep up with your progress. You will continually be in my prayers as well as Kim and the children. Hope you have a Happy New Year!!!!!
Candi, Michael and Briley
Thomas, My name is Daryl Rush, I had my AVR replaced on December 9th. I have the same problem with my back. When I was in the hospital they provided me with a muscle relaxer to help with the pain in the back. This was so helpfull and provided great relief so I could sleep. Since I have been home I was taking a pain medicine of Norcor But I am getting off of the pain med to just tylenol. The muscle relaxer that I recieved in the hospital was called Tortal(I could be wrong the name)It was a muscle relaxer. I still have pain in my back but I am managing all pain with tylenol now. So hopefully this can help you. Good luck and get well. Daryl
A belated Merry Christmas to your wonderful family! Christmas is never belated when the birth of the Savior is the center of your lives. Awesome sharing of your Christmas and progress! I will always treasure the memories of Christmases when our children were young. The cue for them to come out and see what was under the tree was when they heard the open notes of Amy Grant's "Tennessee Christmas." In recent years it's again thrilling to have little ones at Christmas...now grandchildren. Thomas, keep plugging on. I'll be joining your ranks soon. We continue to keep you in our prayers. I appreciate the guestbook entries and prayers from you and Kim.
It is so nice to read the posts of how well you are doing!! I know you must be so thrilled to be at home with your family for Christmas!!! We will continue to keep you in our prayers! Hope you and the whole family enjoy the holidays!! Merry Christmas!
your doing great, i'm five weeks post op and driving! not too far, but great. the sleeping thing will get better, i had to sleep with lots of pillos at first on my back, this being the 5th week i was able to turn on my side last night and only have 2 pillows i almost feel normal so you will do great. take it easy and let everyone care for you, it will help your recovery.
Good Morning Thomas! Congratulations on your recovery progress - it's certainly a "take it one day at a time" thing. You sound really upbeat, and as Christmas approaches just relax, and enjoy watching Christmas movies with the family! I know this is a Christmas you'll never forget, and your faith is a blessing for all who know you. Merry Christmas! Becky