It's Vince Kelley again. You asked how I'm doing and I can truly answer great. I'm a runner and went into the surgery in pretty good shape so I'm sure that helped my recovery a lot. I had the Ross Procedure surgery on a Friday and was out of Mt. Sinai the following Tuesday afternoon. As we are from upstate NY, we stayed two nights in a hotel (at the doctors recommendation) just to ensure that I felt good enough on my own. My wife and I walked a couple of blocks at a time the following few days going out for meals and coffee. I was amazed at how well I felt. It was also the best I had slept in days since nobody was waking me for medications and there were no buzzers going off nearby. Within a week I was walking a mile and was doing 4 miles by the end of the month. I was actually able to begin running again 5 weeks after surgery with my doctor's OK. I was able to start lifting weights again three months after the surgery. As Dr. Stelzer told me, I didn't need to sign up for cardiac rehab as I would do it myself. I ran my first marathon in Oct of 2011 and am looking forward to running my second this Fall. My running friends call me "Porky" due to my pig valve.
You will feel very comfortable at Mt. Sinai. The staff were all great from the doctors and nurses to the food and cleaning staff. Everyone was great to me and my wife. You will do great there.
Greetings and blessings, Chris. I am the mother of John Turan, who at 37, had a Ross Procedure done on March 5, 2008. He was unbelievably brave to have it done at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Shands Hospital, by Dr. Bleiweiss, who by then had only fifty some of those procedures under his belt!
Thanks to God, on whom we trusted all along to carry us through, his surgeon and surgical team, the ICU nurses and ADAM, from whom we gathered the knowledge and strength to go thru it all, John is doing well, as active as he ever was, with two beautiful children ages 6 and 4. We will be thinking about you and praying for you and your family, for your surgeon and your team!
Yeah boy, giddyup!!!! As you say in Texas, this IS your first rodeo, but you will do great. So glad we met. Mom is too! Enjoy next few days in NYC, then show up Monday, go to sleep and let the pro's do their thing.
hi chris-again i wanted to wish u luck-now that you have seen mt sinai hospital (i told you my 1st surgery at mt sinai was when i was 4-50 yrs ago) -imagine a very scared 4 yr old child packing up all her toys in her little overnite bag and leaving her hospital room and getting on elevator by herself and down to the lobby to run away-that would have been me -nurses coming on duty got me and brought me back-lol dont have many memories of that time but i remember that.i will also pray for ya-you will be fine-just dont try and run away-lol
Hi Chris... my name is Mary Ann Terpenny and a patient of Dr. Stelzer. I sent you the previous email about my having the Ross procedure. Dr. Stelzer will take good care of you during your stay at Mount Sinai Hospital. God had blessed us to have such a caring and skilled heart surgeon.
All the best during your recovery process. Mary Ann
It is Jane. I have been doing this lately. Do I really think people know who I am by my style of writing? Really though don't hesitate to call. Mitch and I have chatted during this journey also.
He is doing GREAT. Maybe it is because I demanded it.
Hi Chris! So....you met Mitch and you survived!!! Is he as funny in person as he is on here? The weather here in SC is wet today also, has rained all day. Doesn't do much to make me do a happy dance, lol.
Do you and Nikki have big plans for the weekend in NYC or are you just gonna relax and get ready for Monday? I have to spend the weekend in Cleveland before my surgery also. My pre-op testing will be on Friday 3/9, will meet with Dr.Gillinov on Monday 3/12 and then the big day is Tuesday 3/13. I still don't know for sure what kind of valve I will get or if he will repair my aneurysm. I think that is one reason I still have days of feeling completely out of control. But...I guess I will find out on 3/12.
Hope you have some fun this weekend, and just know that you and Nikki are in my thoughts and prayers. Go get 'em!!
I just wanted to send you an email to let you know that you are in my prayers and you have to best surgeon in the world!! Dr. Seltzer did my Ross procedure on July 12, 2010 and I am happy to say that I have recovered in record time. Thanks to Dr. Seltzer, I was able to be here for my daughter's wedding this past August. As a former patient, I am sure he will remember me and my family. Please send him my best. You are in good hands.
You are in my prayers. Your life is going to be so exciting for sometime now. Enjoy all the babying your wife and kids will be doing for you. Once you are healed, you can start feeling guilty but not before.
Chris and family,
You have done your homework, and you are in the hands of one of the best doctors in the world. Dr. Stelzer is also a special person. We are all praying for you and your family. Check me out, I'm in Adam's book.
Best wishes on your upcoming surgery. Dr. Stelzer performed my Ross Procedure in December of 2009 and everything went great. He and his team are the best! My advice...don't worry about a thing. You are in great hands.
Your journal is so inspiring. Reminds me of the journey I traveled only six months ago. I was blessed, as are you, with lots of support and prayers for this major event. May God's grace be with you and the hands of an extemely well qualified and out- standing surgeon (and his team) that will be with you.
Hi chris good luck but i know you will not need..... I had my aortic valve replaced 2 yrs. this May . read adams book before after surgery sev months down the road He is prettty on mark about what to expect . I know your in great hands Beth Wesson
Chris...I realize I didn't leave my name...Elizabeth Devaney...I read your blog and so many similar things. Have nikki contact if she need support and I was 38, had 2 children and same surgery date...;-)
Chris! So excited for you. You are in the best hands and I am extra thrilled since 2/27/2008 (leap year also) I was having my Ross done by Dr Stelzer. So, Happy 4 year anniversary to me and Happy Heart Healthy day to you. I can not express how glad I am that Dr Stelzer will be taking care of you. You are in the best hands with him and Mt Sinai. Contact me anytime if you want to talk, chat or have questions. I am 30 minutes from Mt Sinai so if you need support or your family needs anything..contact anytime
I will just echo all the previous posts. YOU WILL DO GREAT. As you know this part is the hardest. The actual checking in at the hospital and pre-op are kind of out of your hands. When you get wheeled into surgery you are actually calm. Its like "Let's get this going now". I look forward to your updates when you are in a great state of recovery.
Jane (11 weeks post-op)
Hi Chris, Well it looks like congratulations are in order. I want to wish you the best for your big day. Im sure everything will be amazing for you. Enjoy NYC take in a play while youre there. I guess I am here for the long haul as my doctor said its not bad enough to do anything see ya in 5 months. So I am taking everybodys advice and chilling out with my unsweetened sweet tea and walking to keep it all going what I have started in this process. Im going to stay right hear and cheer everybody on as that day wil turn someday. So my friend you take care have a good trip to NY and I will be here waiting to hear from you all about your day.
Until Much Later LInda H
My parents, Morgan, and I have been praying and continue to pray for a successful surgery. Despite the anxiety you and Niki are both sharing, I hope that you have a fun weekend. I pray God's grace will guide your surgeon's hands and that you continue to feel His presence throughout your recovery. Know that we will be with you in spirit! Love to you both!
Wow, another star!! Congratulations patient in the spotlight!!!
So you finally had your moment. I have had several, lol. Unless you have actually experienced it, you just can't understand. That is what is so great about this journal site. We have all either been there or going through it now. You know Chris, ladies like men who are not ashamed to cry!! That is a real man!
Now...as for Friday. I warned Mitch not to get you in trouble. I know your wife will be there with you, but it's still Mitch, lol!!! I think he is ready for a little trouble, lol. I'm jealous you guys are getting to meet.
Let us know how much fun you guys have.
The waiting is almost over. Just think...in just a few weeks almost all of us will be recovering, some completely recovered. What in the world will we find to talk about then???
Have fun this weekend and we'll "talk" again before Monday
Welcome to the PS. Glad to pass the baton. Looking forward to meeting you Friday!
All things happen for a reason. Seems like you needed a hard day to get to your point of readiness. Sounds like you are there now. That is a good thing. Take it easy, do what you need to do. We all have our own ways of prepping for this. But know this, the waiting and anticipation is way worse than the actually event. You can do this!
Chris. You are ready & will do super ! Part of this great trip is meeting some of the "valvers". As I call them. Take an I phone pix of u & Mitch & put it on your photo page - like Jeff and I did. Sort of surreal afterwards.
Now let the calm tahe over - and relax. I'm 2 weeks out & leaving for Fla for a week or so - to recover there.its a bit warmer ! It gets better every day. Bless you & your beautiful family. Hug & give my non cuz a big sloppy kiss for me. Best. Nancy Friedman 2-9-12. St Louis. It's over !
Chris, I know you are going to be in great shape in just a few months - just put your trust in Stelzer and you will be fine!!!! Great to meet you.... My best wishes are with you and your family. Please keep us posted!!!
You can do this! You are in the hands of some very exceptional doctors. You will be in my thoughts and prayers and I look forward to reading all about your progress. You are going to do so good! Stay postive and try to have peace!
ive been following your posts-u will be at a great hospital. i had my first open heart surgery there back in 1961-when i was only 4. (i am now 54). back then the open heart surgery was new and very risky.my surgeon had just accepted a postion at mt sinai-my mom had followed him from his old hospital where he worked down in jackson memorial hospital in miami fla. he performed the first ever open heart surgery done in florida back in 1956-0r 57.his name is robert litwak. i dont see my surgeon until march 5 at mass gen hospital-and if he cant answer all my questions-to my satisfaction-i will go to mt siani.well take care and ill be thinking of you
Chris had sent this to a few others & thot you might enjoy it too Youwill notice a soulful calmness that will come over you just a few days before. Not sure what. But something does pop up and take over - you will be a peace - and all will be well.
Mark my words! let it take over - release- and engage
It's beautiful. Talk soon. Hugs. Nancy. (2-9-12 it's OVER) Got the OK to fly to keys Thursday so will spend a week or so there. Not too shabby. ! Even bought a recliner ( power) for that condo too. Ha ha) Luv. Nancy and congrats on your new found stardom ". Ha ha
Dear Chris, Sending good thoughts and prayers your way. We are the lucky ones, the ones who can be repaired and lead full lives. You will do great. I know this to be true. I had full monty sternotomy done at Northwestern/Chicago 7 weeks ago and already walking 2 miles a day. You are young, in shape, did your homework, our success rates super high, no worries...all will go well and you will soon be on the road of recovery. Janis Kielbasa
This is your Aunt Tita. Your mom sent us your journal and Tomas and I have read what you and your family have been through. You are and have always been an amazing young man. We know that everything is going to be fine with the help of angels above, like your grandmother and all your great aunts. We will keep you and your family in our prayers.
This is your Aunt Diana (your Mom's cousin). I just read through your story and journal and it looks like you have really done your homework. You are an incredible person and have a very positive attitude. I will be praying for you and your family. I look forward to seeing you the next time I come down to Houston!
Hi Chris, I think it is Jeff said he has buzzing in his ears. Well I do to. Right now it is about to drive me crazy. When I went to the doctor the first time and had to fill out all of the papers for history etc, it mentioned ringing in the ears. So that has made me wonder. Yeah Im afraid to plan any outings cause you just dont know what that day has in store for you.Take care.
Until Later Linda H
Hi Chris. They say things happen for a reason. A million people may do things differently than you but if you know what you want go for it. If it was meant to be it will. I had a bad case of dizziness for a few weeks about 5 years ago. Begnin positional vertigo. In fact the thing they told me to do was sit on the bed and bang each side of my head on the bed kind of like you. It went away and yours should too
But about 6 months before my surgery I started hearing buzzing in my ears I have thought was connected to the insufficiency but it hasent gone away since surgery. In fact my hearing has gotten worse. But I made it through surgery ( bovine valve. Mini incision) and I'm glad my heart won't swell up and get fat from all that leakage. Everything else is GRAVY. enjoy NY.
Hi Chris, Me dizziness comes and goes. When I get up from a chair,I have to go slow cause the room starts going dark,It comes right back. Sometimes when I am shopping I will just run out of steam and just can't go any further, so I will have to sit down or get an electric cart, and terrify everyone in the store lol. A couple weeks ago the butterflies kicked in cause of the test that I didn't want. Had the neighbor bring over blood pressure machine and my pulse was 101. Blood pressure was a little high but it is never real normal for me any way. And yes I saw my stomach beating which really scared me and I felt and heard my pulse in my ear.
I will be glad when it is all over and I can get on with a happy retirement. I found all this out on my 65th birthday. Well on Wed we will see what happens. I know I dont want to wait for this to get any worse. In Sept it was moderate 3.2. With an anuersym I feel like a walking time bomb. Thats not fun.
Well good luck to you and your family. Enjoy New York. Sounds like you have amazing doctor, praying and all that would make me feel real good.
Until Later Linda H
Chris good going. You & Jeff will ACE this thing. It's not a piece of cake but does get better each day ! How blessed we are to have this little group of ours.
Please make sure the notes/posts are covered. We all enjoy them. Continued success Homework is done now u just sit back & pass the test. Ha ha. Nancy
Chris, I'm so glad your visit went so well...and I have to say, I'm really impressed with your surgeon...the fact that he prayed with you says volumes in my opinion. You are in my thoughts and prayers as is your family.
Looking forward to conversing "on the other side"!!
I am so pleased that your visit with the Dr. was so positive and that he prayed with you. You are using this difficult situation to glorify God and remembering your priorities. I could not be more proud of "my kids." I can tell you it is not easy watching you and Niki have to make this kind of decision. I think you are handling it better than I! :)I am so glad that you are comfortable with the dr.
See all you can of Manhattan while you have that goof-off time. I may not be there physically, but I will be there in spirit and love. Mom Debbie
I want to wish you best wishes for your upcoming date. You will feel a lot better afterwards. I am like you aortic valve regurgitation with an aneursym. I just had ultra sound and tee test test. On the 22nd I will meet the doctor and decide what to do. It has gotten a little worse. Did you find out anything else regarding your dizziness? I to feel that way or light headness.I will be checking in on you and hope for the very best.
Until Later Linda H
I wish you the best!! February 16th is my one year birthday with my new St. Jude's Aortic Valve. I also had a bi-cuspid valve - wish they would have replaced it when I was 38 - my life would have been much better. I feel so good and I can do so many things I wasn't capable of before. I am 62. I am looking forward to hearing about your progress. If you want to read my journal it is under Nancy Wilson - it is all positive and a little crazy!
Two of our kids graduated from Texas A&M in College Station. One daughter lived in College Station and Houston for 13 years. Glad to have her back home in Oregon for the last 5 years.
Awesome what you told your kids! My husband call me his "Good Hearted Woman".
Hey Chris, I am just getting caught up on your HVJ now. I had this little surgery 2 weeks ago that distracted me a bit from HVJ, I know, bad excuse, this is all about you!! Anyway, back now.
Great news you have chosen your date and doctor. Not sure if you are checking your HVJ while on your trip to NYC, but I am pretty close to Mt. Sinai. If there is anything I can do to help you while in NYC, please let me know. My cell is 917-561-1574. Either on this trip or for your family during your next trip. Welcome to my fair city. I am sure it will treat you well.