Well how was work? Did it feel good to be back? Glad you have been given the all clear. How long do you stay on the coumadin? I only have one week left, then I can say good-bye to it!! I agree about the pain, some days I hardly notice it and then sometimes I have to take Ibuprofen. It takes time I guess. Thanks for all your insight and friendly posts, I appreciate them! Take care and don't over-do it!!
Yay! Great news. Good for you Paul. Glad everything looked okay, you had me worried for a while earlier! I'm right behind you.... had my one month echo today and they said everything looked good! Do you still have much pain in your side? just wondering.... It seems like it comes and goes for me, one day is good and the next not so good..
Hi Paul, good luck tomorrow with your appt. I'll be thinking of you and watching for your update!
Glad your coumadin is at a therapeutic level, I finally got mine there this week, but hopefully will only be on it for another 2-3 weeks!! I go for my one month echo this week, to check for any residual leaking... hope it looks okay. Have you had one yet? A small part of me worries that the regurg. will still be there...How is your right side doing? are you still numb in places? I am, and wonder how long it will last. Hope you can start driving! and working.
Happy Birthday fellow Robot!!!! I'm trying really hard not to say "I told you so"!!! Glad you are on coumadin, and you are probably feeling better because you are off the other medications, not because of the stitch.....The coumadin is only temporary, the main pain is having to get the blood work done to get it "therapeutic". It does protect you from clots though, and I'm glad you are on it!!!! Glad they didn't find anything on the TEE! Go eat some cake!!!
Sounds like they're treating you for what they saw on the echo, not based on how you feel. The nurse is just carrying out the doctors orders, she can't say "oh, you're feeling better, that changes everything, don't bother taking the Coumadin"
Paul, so when do you go to see your surgeon? I'm sorry you are having these troubles, it sounds like anesthesia wasn't doing their job very well during your TEE, you should complain!!! Are you feeling any different since being off your medications? You sound like you're keeping a positive attitude and sense of humor in spite of everything! Good for you. You are an inspiration! Continuing to pray for you!
Paul, you are going to be a challenge for the Dr.'s aren't you? Seriously, I hope all is well, and they can find out what is causing your "episodes"! I do know that the reason I'm on coumadin for 6 weeks is to prevent clots from forming around the annuloplasty ring, like I said before. I wonder how many other repairs are and aren't put on coumadin afterwards for a short time? Do you have anyone home with you or are you alone all day? Be sure you have your phone close by at all times!!!
Thinking of you! Especially tomorrow!
What do you mean be "all weird"?
If they think you may be producing clots around your annuloplasty ring, wouldn't the weird arm thing and weakness be caused by it going to your brain? If so, why are they not looking at your head?
I'm having the same repair (annular ring instal) and have read that you form tissue around it that eventually encases it. Right? Clots are not supposed to form.
TEE isn't so bad. I would imagine you're not crazy about any more anesthesia after just getting through the BIG one.
Hang in there.
That throat numbing globby stuff is disgusting isn't it? The dr said to me "drink as much as you want" so I took a sip (almost threw up) and then handed the cup back to him. He said "you have to drink the rest". So I said "you said drink as much as you want, I don't want anymore!". They thought that was amusing and they mad eme gargle with the rest.
That was the worst part of the TEE.
Paul, that is interesting, did they do an annuloplasty? place a new ring around the valve to reinforce it? or did they just cut out redundant tissue and suture it together? The reason they put me on coumadin, is to be sure I don't throw any clots while the tissue "epithelializes" around the ring and becomes one with it. It is only temporary for 6 weeks, and then I can stop it, but they said it was necessary for that time.? According to Mayo Clinic that is standard procedure after a repair??
Wow is right!
great advice, don't be afraid to call the dr if you feel anything funky.
I also have a fear of stroke. I've had some weird vision things that led me to have a brain scan about a year ago. Now I'm paranoid. I will take your experience to heart and not ignore any symptoms.
Hope your feeling better and this is the last of the TIAs.
Well those are some strange occurences! It will be interesting to see what the Drs. say. Boy the three weeks have gone by so fast - but perhaps not for you. Keep up the good work and you will be back on the job soon! Jeanne
Paul, that is scary, did it only happen yesterday? and did you happen to check your pulse when it happened? I bet you're right, you may need your medication adjusted. Maybe slow down just a bit, 4 miles a day sounds like a lot, everyone tells me to take it slow! I'm not looking forward to the itching at the incisions, right now they are still pretty numb, as is my entire right side. I'm starting to do some arm stretches now, it's hard to believe surgery was only a week ago!
Glad to hear your recovery is on track.
I'm really surprised doctors don't give advice on scar care. Keeping my scar pliable was a really big deal when I was rehabbing my wrist after surgery to repair a fracture. My therapist had me massaging vitamin E into it and massaging it to prevent adhesions. She said a scar that heals improperly can cause a lot of discomfort. I wonder if that's some of the pulling you're feeling? Maybe it's just healing from within....you should probably ask your doctor.
Hope you have nice walking weather...it would be nice if it warmed up a little!
It's really interesting to hear all about the recovery and how up beat you are. You are such a good person to share and encourage Holly this way. Always thinking of others is just one of your great qualities.
Hi Paul, about the sleeping on the side thing. Before I left the hospital, I was instructed NOT to sleep on my stomach or side for a while. Not really sure what "a while" is because it isn't an issue since I am still in my recliner. Still feels strange when I try lying on my side. It's 6 weeks out for me and my incision, although well healed is very sensitive and began to have a pulling/tearing sensation. I have tried Mederma, aloe gel, vitamin E cream and Aquaphor. I think the Aquaphor has helped the most.
Linda Dixon, AVR 3/13/2012
Thanks for the update again. I do have a cat and will have to watch for that, she may be banned from the bedroom for a while! The pictures you posted are helpful.... I, too, wonder what the scratches are from?? I appreciate you being so honest and yet so up-beat. Sitting here in the hotel thinking about what's going to happen in the next two days...makes my heart ache!!!! :)
Thanks Vicki. Ya know you might have something with the light/dark contrast. I notice them coming while reading the computer which is basically a white background on this site. It is usually fairly dark in my house as I live in the woods and it has been raining pretty good up in NH for the last couple days so fairly dark. I'll have to watch for that. Thanks for pointing that out.
I agree with Nancy that you may be having ocular/optical migraines- search the site for "visual disturbances" and you will see how common this is. I never had them before OHS and really think there is a relationship. Mine are decreasing in frequency now at 11 months postop. Most of the time, for me, they seem to be triggered by light/dark contrast. My eye doc says this is very benign as long as they are less than 30 minutes each and they don't get worse (which could be a sign of TIA), so I just note the time and they usually subside in less than 20 minutes.
Vicki Pierson, mitral valve repair, June 2011
PS- Glad the robotic approach worked out for you. I was supposed to have it but woke up with a sternotomy and it was a huge disappointment. Still is.
Yeah Nancy, that is an entrance site for the robot. I also have a hole down in my groin. A little more southerly and on the inside crease of my leg.
The little flashing lights have gone away. I took two 250 MG aspirin.
My Dr. put me on the big boy aspirin for 4 weeks.
I get ocular migraines all the time. I've been getting them for years. Is it like a flashbulb went off in your face? Mine start with a tiny spot of blurriness that gets bigger and bigger until it drifts off the side of my vision. Sometimes I get a headache afterwards but most time not. Mine are caused by stress.
Maybe yours are an effect from the anesthesia??
I had surgery 12/5/11 for mitral valve repair. I also had the numb tongue for quite a while. It did eventually go away, but I couldn't figure out what caused it. I had a full stern. entrance and had very little discomfort. I think the entry you had is more painful because of muscle. The sternum area has very few nerve endings. You sound like you are doing well in spite of all that you have been through. As you probably see already, it gets better every day.
I have had a couple of those flashing light episodes since I've been home also. Luckily (or not lucky I guess...) I've had them before, mainly when I was pregnant. The first time I freaked out being a newly pregnant woman and ran to the doctor. They said they were ocular migraines. Mine usually go away in about 30 minutes, and laying down in a dark room definitely helps. Here is a link http://www.livestrong.com/article/9634-need-ocular-migraine-symptoms/, but if you google it there are tons of articles. I am not sure why I have had an increase since the surgery, so I will be interested in what your doctor says. Mine happen whenever something is "off" in my body or if I eat or drink anything with artificial sweetener. OK, you probably don't care about the strange goings-on in my body, but I wanted to reassure you a little! ;)