Update - The pulmonic valve replacement surgery on 2-13 went very smooth! Dr. Pettersson was pleased with my outcome. I was in the ICU for just about 24hrs before I was cleared to a step-down unit. Pain has been very manageable until 2-17 when I had a huge coughing spell that ended up loosening up some of the cartilage in my chest wall about an inch of the center line of the incision. My lungs are clear and the persistent cough was caused by sinus drainage. The surgical team came in and checked the sternum. It was still very stable but the "clicking/rubbing" noises they didn't like so much, especially being that close to the incision. They gave me meds to control coughing and to clear up my sinuses then wrapped me in a big chest support. The chest support does help but at the same time limits the deep breath exercises. I continued to do my hallway walks and strengthening exercises. Anyways, on a brighter note - I was sent home YESTERDAY!! (2-18 five days post-op) Still wearing my "girdle." I would have to press that my pain is minimal except the 2in x 2 in square on the right side of my chest where I have the clicking/rubbing/grinding sensations...it's pretty damn painful. I was just told to watch my incision to make sure there is no drainage and that it doesn't get any worse.
Change of plans - As most of you know, I'm scheduled to have open heart surgery to insert a pulmonary valve tomorrow morning at the Cleveland Clinic. My surgeon's secretary just called and informed there is a very critically ill infant being admitted tonight and will be taking my surgical appointment. The surgeon said he would be more than willing to operate tomorrow but it wouldn't be able to start until after 5pm. With the surgery being a minimum of 6 hours that would make a long day for him, his staff, and my family. I have chose the option of waiting until Friday (the 13th...I know.) This would just be easier on everyone. I would like everyone to keep the infant and his/her family in their prayers tonight and tomorrow. I couldn't imagine what they are going through right now.