Michael's Heart Valve Journal

Joined January 16, 2018

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My Story

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    I am from: Reynoldsville, Pa
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    My surgery date is: January 23, 2018
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    I was diagnosed with: Aortic Regurgitation
    Aortic Stenosis
    Bicuspid Aortic Valve
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    My surgery was: Aortic Valve Replacement
    Aortic Valve Repair
    Mitral Valve Repair
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    My surgeon is: Dr. Jose Navia
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    My hospital is: Cleveland Clinic

In my own words:

On 27 October 2017 I went to the Hospital for what I thought was a going for just a bad Migraine. It turned out that I had a bad case of Sepsis. I was given 3 strong doses of antibiotics to stop it, for the most part it worked. My Dr was concerned that I wasn't improving so he ordered a TEE to see if I had any heart infection. It came back positive for Endocarditis so they gave me more antibiotics to kill that. I stayed in for 11 days and when I went home I had to self administer antibiotics for 6 weeks from the last clear blood culture. I was put on 11 different types because I had adverse reactions to them. I had to go back to the Hospital for a total of 20 days in the Months of October and November (we crushed the deductible). I returned for headaches, fever, kidney failure, and chest pain. On one of the returns I had a second TEE that showed that the infection had changed in size and shape but seemed to be the same size. The Cardiologist and the Transthoracic Surgeon consulted a third Cardiologist and they said that they were leaning toward valve replacement and or repair but they wanted a Cath done before any decision could be made for sure. I had an appointment with my Cardiologist assuming that he would have another TEE done or he would order the cath. He did neither, the only thing he did do was listen to my heart in different positions, with me holding my breath, me expelling my breath, me leaning forward and back. Then he said that he could hear my Murmur into my carotid artery (before this he could only hear it in my chest). When he finished listening he said that he couldn't hear anything and I was fine. I asked if he was going to order another TEE because the Infectious Disease doctors at UPMC Pittsburgh had told us that when the last of the antibiotics were given they wanted another one done within 10 days He said "No it isn't necessary, he couldn't hear anything". I asked him why my heart was racing at between 100 and 120 BPM he said "I don't know" I asked him why I was so short of breath, he said "I dont know", I asked why I was getting dizzy, he said "I dont know". I asked when I could return to work he said at least until my next visit with him in Feb. My Wife asked him what restrictions I had, he said "None". When we left his office I told my Wife "We are going to Cleveland!" We had toyed with the idea before this but this was the last straw. I wasn't going to sit here and slowly die and not do something, anything. The next day my wife called Cleveland Clinic, they had her get everything that they needed and she did. On Thursday, January 11, 2018 I got the call. The Nurse I spoke with told me that they wanted me there on Thursday, January 18, 2018 to the 19th for testing and I was to return on the 22nd to meet the surgeon and then on Tuesday January 23, 2018 I am scheduled for Surgery. That was the worst phone call ever, because when I asked why so quick on this she said that the surgeon wanted me there sooner rather than later.
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