About Me (In My Own Words)
We got home from hospital yesterday at 7:30pm. Glad to be in our own bed last night. Kelton is in just mild pain when takes a really deep breath...HUGE improvement since Thursday.
Did a second echocardiogram ( ultrasound) yesterday and Dr said we likely would not be able to see a measeable reduction in the amt of fluid around the heart in just 2 days...but we could ! It was measuring about 2cm on Thurs then down to 1.5 cm on Sat. A better than expected result. Also..the heart function showed improvement-- It was an EVEN better than Dr's best case senario. Kelton is being a super healer. The pain decrease and recovery from the pericarditis are going much faster than typical.
I call the getting a virus that caused inflammation and pain around heart sac " God's early warning system".....it is a completely diiferent thing than having a bad heart valve but it was HOW we learned what we REALLY needed to know.
It was a huge shock to learn that my very healthy and fit 47 year old handsome husband with perfect hair and teeth and great sense of humor was born with anything not quite right. I have to keep reminding him that it is "not his fault"...and was he was "born that way".
He has a BICUSPID AORTIC VALVE. It means the heart valve has 2 leaflets instead of 3. It can be heriditary but we do NOT know of any genetic family members with it. Told that Nat (our neice's husband) also has a bicuspid aortic valve and that he has known about since birth.
By itself that is not necessarily a problem but makes it more likely to lead to a problem...which, unfortunately, in Kelton's case it did. It is "leaking"...called aortic regurgitation. Blood from his heart's left ventricle to the aortic should be pumping in just one direction....but on his at least half the blood is going back the wrong way with each heartbeat.
His heart has to work much harder which has caused it to become enlarged. It has also caused the aotic root area to be dialted --stretched bigger-- which is an aortic aneurysm. It is fairly minor at this time but if left alone would continue to become more and more stretched in the years to come.
The BIG FIX is an aortic valve replacement (a repair is not an option in his case) which means open heart surgery to take out the bad one out and replace it. It is the patient choice to pick either a man-made valve OR a tissue one made from pig or bovine. The man-made will last forever but then would have to take and monitor Warfarin or other blood thinner medicine forever. The medicine helps the blood flow better through the man-man plastic or metal valve. If gets a cut or injury with bleeding..there will be more blood due to decreased clotting. With the tissue valve...no blood thinning medicine would be needed but the downside is that it will only last for 10-15 years then need more surgery would be necessary (possibly could do less invasively through groin intead of open heart)
More Info About Me & My Heart
More About Me
I am from:
Inver Grove Heights, MN
My surgery date is:
December 10, 2015
I was diagnosed with:
Bicuspid Aortic Valve
My surgery was:
Aortic Valve Replacement