Hi everyone, it’s been a while since I’ve posted. For some reason I wasn’t able to get on to post on my journal but I finally figured it out. The last three weeks have been quite an ordeal all. On March 11, I was admitted to the hospital with fluid around my heart. At 4:30 AM they did a Pericardial Window to drain the fluid. I spent five days in the hospital on high dosage steroids and came home feeling pretty good. Actually was feeling stronger than I had in weeks. I had two good days at home and started deteriorating again, ended up back in the hospital with fluid around my heart again.
This time they tried the pericardial centesis but they were unable to reach the fluid. So for the last week I was on high-dose IV steroids. I came home Saturday the 24th and have been feeling pretty good since then. I am on 60 mg of oral prednisone for the next six weeks to get the inflammation and fluid reduced. I have been feeling more like myself the past four days than I have since my OHS. I went back for a check up yesterday and a follow-up echo and the fluid is decreasing but it’s going to be a slow process. Problem is the steroids are bothering my second incision and my second drain tube wound has opened so I’m dealing with those issues. But I really feel like the treatment is working, lots of side effects with the steroids but I’ve got to take the good with the bad. I’ve been watching my carbs, sugar, and salt intake for that reason. Today I wore a heart monitor for 24 hours and returned that this afternoon. I will get a report on that next Friday. So all in all I feel like I may be conquering this. I go Monday for a follow up visit with the surgeon to look at my incision and the drain wound. I guess I just never really thought about complications after the surgery, my mind was centered on the surgery itself and it went well. I have read on here about so many complications that people have dealt with. It sure has been a rough 2018 for some of us. But with prayers and strength we will all come out on the other side, right? Now that I know why I couldn’t get on my journal I can follow up on some of you that are fellow journalists. I’m hoping everyone is doing well, and for all of you with upcoming surgeries best of luck. I will update soon. Debbie
Hi everyone, I hope everyone who has had their surgeries are doing well. I am doing pretty good overall, my surgeon released me on Monday. He says I can put my hands over my head and bend over now. He also said that I can graduate to 10 pounds. I know I’m not ready for that yet because it hurts when I bend over and I’m barely lifting 5 pounds without excruciating pain. So the nurse in his office said just to take it at my own pace , I’m the only one that knows what my body can tolerate. I have been taking walks by myself in the neighborhood and showering myself since I got home so I feel like I’m doing well for 3 weeks out. I also prepare my own light meals. I am still on pain medication, 1 every four hours and in the morning 2 because mornings are very painful. I found out yesterday that my right diaphragm is not lowering like it should, it’s raised which is making me short of breath and I’m experiencing pain on my right side. The pulmonary doctor said that the phrenic nerve was probably damaged during surgery causing paralysis on the right side of my diaphragm, hopefully it’s temporary. Also when I went to the cardiologist last week I had to wear a halter monitor for 24 hours because of the 1st degree heart block and a-fib that I’m experiencing. He wants to insert a loop recorder but it’s too soon mbecause it has to be done under a twilight sedation. I am not recovered enough for that to take place. I go back to see my cardiologist next Thursday hopefully I will get some positive news. I’m really kind of discouraged right now but hoping that it’s all temporary and I am trying to be optimistic that it will all go away. I feel like I went in to have a mitral valve repaired and came home with a host of other problems. Has this happened to anyone else after surgery?
Well my last post was mostly a rant so I needed to tell about my experience on the 8th floor. I couldn’t have been treated any better. My every concern and request was met with professional attitude and also with compassion. My RN’s were truly a blessing! My last chest tube didn’t come out until Monday and I was on Lasix to try and rid my lungs of the extra fluid. I was short of breath for that reason. My blood pressure continued to sway below my normal which is low anyways. This was a concern as my heart was having A fib fluttering going on. They had me on a beta blocker until I started having something called 1st Degree Heart Block. They then had to take me off the beta blockers and start me on blood thinners. They put me on Eliquis. This is necessary because your heart can throw a blood clot when it’s going through these events. My surgeon and cardiologist are hopeful that this is trama related from the surgery and will level out. The A fib could be temporary from the surgery also but I could also be prone to Afib because of my enlarged Atria. So because of these things they kept me an extra day for observation. As far as my progress throughput my stay I did wonderful. I was waking the halls from Saturday on and was able to get out of bed by myself with a small amount of assistance getting back in. I had help Sunday AM with my shower but from then on I was doing well by myself. I only needed assistance to the bathroom till Sunday also. All in all things went well and they said I was doing well. I actually got sprung on Wed, Feb 21st! Home at last!
Well where to start: I had an excellent surgeon, he did a wonderful job on my mitral valve repair. He even told my family and Myself that I had a beautiful heart and that everything went well. Then starts my post surgery in the ICU. That was a nightmare ! I had one of the worst Cardiac RN nurses they could have ever worked that dept. You could tell this is not where he wanted to be working , I’m not sure why he was assigned to that department. First of all it was the overflow dept of the ICU but I’m not sure that had anything to do with it. He had trouble regulating my blood pressure so the call was made to my surgeon who instructed him to hang a unit of blood to try to raise my blood pressure. Because of this he would not give me any pain medicine because of my blood pressure. I kept asking over and over what they could do because I was suffering so badly with the pain, I could barely breathe it hurt so bad. I truly believe he got tired of me asking for him to do something for my pain So he ignored me when I called out. I ask him to wipe my lips which barely got a swipe of the corner of a wet towel. I asked for ice chips or water and I was told no. He and a coworker came in and moved me at 5 AM in the morning with no fluids, no ice and barely any pain medicine. The whole time while they were moving me they were discussing how they wanted to be in other fields of medicine, not what they were doing. I was then made to sit in the chair till about 8:15 till day shift was settled in. I was astonished and miserable. Thank God my level of care got better. I truly believe he set my recovery back. I did better the next 2 days but they weren’t managing my pain consistently. I was not truly happy till I got to PCU. I cannot say enough about the staff in that unit. Still here, still have a drainage tube, and still struggling with my breathing. Getting quality care now though!
I just spoke to my sister and my Mom passed at 2:30 AM this morning. She’s at peace now. I am heartbroken and relieved at the same time. No more pain and suffering and she is now with my father and our Father in Heaven.😪😪
Well I’m here, arrived at 5:00 as instructed. I am his 2nd surgery today so I won’t even be called back till about 8:00. Sitting in a recliner catching up on Facebook and messages. I don’t seem to be as anxious right now, I guess I’m resigned to the fact that this is happening. Looking forward to it being over with! God is with me!
Well, I’m lying here wide awake and my surgery is less than 8 hours away. Seeing my name on the upcoming surgeries is surreal. I have to be at the hospital @ 5:00 AM not to mention my surgical scrub shower before I leave. I don’t see much sleep tonight. Very anxious!
My Strawberry freezer jam my Mom taught me how to make. I’ve been making it every year since I left home. Thinking of my Mom😪
2 more days
Journal posted on February 13, 2018
Well, 2 more days before my surgery, I’ve been keeping busy. My mom is on the decline and all life saving measures have been stopped. It’s only a matter of time now and she will join my father and be with the Lord. Sunday night I made her Strawberry freezer jam. It was my way of thinking of her knowing I can’t be there. My house is clean, laundry done and today is my pre op. I pick up a dear friend later today who is flying in from Maryland for my surgery. Anxiety levels are high. She’ll be good for me.
So I only have 6 more days till my surgery, getting more anxious by the day. To add to my anxiety my Mom is in the hospital and the doctors say she may not make it another week. She lives in Pennsylvania, I’m in Florida so there’s no way I can go home. I have put it in the Lords hands. This truly sucks right now.😪
I am 3 weeks out from my mitral valve surgery. The anticipation is overwhelming, just thinking about it makes me tear up. But yesterday I found out that 2 of my besties are coming for my surgery. I can’t tell you how much that means. I have a wonderful support group here but knowing my friends of 35+ years will be here is good news. My daughter lives with me so she’ll be my primary caregiver and I have my late husband’s sisters( my sisters by another mother) here too, along with many friends who are offering their help. I am blessed! I know that I’ll be fine, I have my faith in God and I know I have many guardian angels. Unfortunately, with all that said it doesn’t take the fear away. I only wish my husband was still here to lean on and hug. I just want this behind me so I can start the recovery process. I’m not looking forward to this at all!
I have made Maryland Crab Soup, Ham and bean soup, Chili, and homemade Italian meat sauce with meatballs. Going in the freezer to make it easier for my support group to prepare meals for me! Very productive weekend!