Meredith Bray posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I'm 42, and had surgery on March 5th, AVR with a mechanical valve. I rode a rollercoaster on June 1. I did a strenuous mountain hike on July 1.
I understand the wobble. You are not alone. Find strength and peace and calm from all the ones who are thinking of you and have gone through this. It is scary, and it's ok to be scared and randomly burst in to tears. Sometimes I wanted to be alone, sometimes I wanted to be distracted.
Wayne posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Good luck with our op & hope you have a speedy recovery, I had an aorta valve repair & root replacement June last year, I found on the recovery side it helped to look at how much more I could do week by week as I recovered as to what I couldn't do, also the rehabilitation course I was offered on the NHS helped massively, the jist of it was doing star jumps (& other exercises) with people who'd had similar surgery yet it helped me hugely with my confidence as much as the physical recovery.
Tim posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I had my redo valve replacement 9 months ago with root replacement and a mechanical valve. I had a tissue valve 11 years before that when I was 43 which fails predictably at some point. I also have a 2 year old at home so I feel some of your anxiety. You are making the right decision and you will be on the other side of this thing before you know it getting better and better. Will be thinking of you.
Jeff Pheffer posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Hi Rebecca. Before my surgery I wrote down 3 things I wanted the drs and nurses to say whenever they could. I put them on a laminated card. On the card I wrote my name and I told them it would help speed my recovery. You have to find what is true for you. I wrote:
You're a fighter and you never give up
You always give 100%
You have a great life
My surgeon said fine. I also asked that I be his first case of the day. I had my aortic valve replacement surgery Aug 2011. Almost 3 years ago. All the best.
Darlene from Spring, Tx posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I am 65 years old and had my second valve replacement in March. I was home in 7 days and back at work in 6 weeks. All is good and I will keep you in my prayers. I found the hardest part was the inability to use your arms for pushing and pulling. But that was just for a short time. I was back at home and on my own 3 weeks after surgery. One week in the hospital and another at my Brothers. I was so glad to get home. I know you will do fine it will be over before you know it.
Tom from Missouri posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I am 57 and had my aortic root andaorta valve replaced this past December 27th. I was home on day 6. Back to work at 8 weeks. Pretty much back to normal. You will do fine. God will watch over you, your surgeon and team, and our family. You have little ones to raise. Amazing that you made it this far. No doubt that God was and is watching over you all. Keep us posted.
Jerry Dolan posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Good luck Rebecca, I had my surgery Dec 18th 2013. I'm 78, feel great with no restrictions. (Other than my age, of course.) I was 5 days in the hospital and did not need rehab. I had my surgery at Hartford Hospital in Hartford, Connecticut. Had a cardio checkup this morning, and everything is great. I trust you will have equal success.
David Belisle, Maine posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Good luck Rebecca! I had the same surgery 5 years ago and have never felt better. I was 55 when I had mine due to a biscupid valve that developed stenosis. You have obviously done your homework if you found this site. We are all here for you.
Catrina Glover- Burleson TX posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I had aortic valve replacement 3 yrs ago at the tender age of 36. It was four years after my diagnosis before it was time to have it replaced and was always the monkey on my back during that time.. 3 yrs later I look back on that time and it has made me stronger in my life and in my faith. You will do fine. Heart patients are strong and we have a will to keep going and get back to normal life. If u want to talk please feel free to get in touch.
susan constantine posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Hi Rebecca, that you for sharing your story with us. I think you are an inspiration to young people. My daughter age 18 is feeling scared, and nervous about what sge is about to face and recovery. I beleive she needs a friend to talk to. Would you be willing to share your story with her and be a supportive voice? if so, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
My daughters name is McKenzie, and I am her mon Susan.
Thanks so much!
mike posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I have followed this site for about 18 months - having found it when 'researching' for my own aortic valve replacement. I too am coming out of the woodwork as a UK patient. I have found the site useful but to be honest found it difficult to relate to much of the 'control freak' US mindset of wanting control over every detail of their treatment (choosing their surgeon, deciding what make of valve they want blah blah). I have faith in the skill of NHS surgeons and put myself in their hands. Result - my broken heart was mended on 14th Feb 2014 and I am now age 62 playing golf and leading a generally active and very enjoyable life . I was pretty much asymptomatic prior to the op and would have been unaware of my condition if it had not been detected by a murmur during routine 'mid-life' GP surgery screening for High BP etc.. As many have said ; waiting is worst. The op itself I know nothing about - I went in to the pre-op room and the next thing I knew in what felt like a few minutes later I was waking up in intensive care being told all was well and then back to sleep for hours. The first 48 hours post op were tough I won't lie but progress is so rapid its nothing to worry about and very soon all seems a distant memory. My only frustration was having to stay in a couple of extra days until my warfarin level was high enough so was in hospital 8 days when I was fit enough really to go home after 4 days.
I find it remarkable that my condition would have been 'incurable' at the time I was born with it but now in 50 odd years such major heart surgery has become so routinely successful with rates on a par with dental procedures!
I will follow your story with interest and wish you all the very best. Nothing to worry about in becoming a proud member of 'the zipper club' :-)
Judy posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Hi Rebecca, I had a replacement aortic valve in December 2013 in Plymouth, I opted for an organic one & so far miss piggy is doing me proud! I am back playing golf, nordic walking & attending a fitness class once a week.
I improved the most when I came out of hospital & became master of my own destiny. I was in for 6 days
I am 59 & feel better than I have for years, didn't realise I was as poorly as I was, good luck with your op & keep positive
George Sirepisios posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I'm 44 and 3 Months ago I had the same procedures done, except, that I choose to go with a bio-prosthetic valve.
I'll be praying for you and wish you the best.
Any questions that you may have, feel free to email me.
Alex from Scotland. posted a note for Rebecca that says:
We Brits are coming out of the woodwork now! Had my mechanical Aorta valve op. In Glasgow 6 years ago, aged 59, together with double bypass. When I queried my surgeon as he described the operation, I said to him that he made it sound very simple and straightforward. He replied "It's what I do". And so he did, very well. It is a live changing experience, but well worth it. You will ask yourself a lot of questions, and there will be lots of doubts as you progress, but remain positive and see your future, because, you will certainly have one. Keep smiling!
Will follow your progress with interest.
david davis posted a note for Rebecca that says:
I had the aortic valve replacement surgery in October 2013. I did well and was able to go back to work at my office in 3 weeks. If you haven't done so read Mr. Picks "Patients guide to heart valve surgery" It is very accurate and takes away some of the suspense. Best of luck to you.
Terrie posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Rebecca- Hi my name is Terrie and I just read about you this morning.
I must say outright your daughters are really adorable1
Also! So glad that you have already heard from "M" in Cornwall as She was just saying She seemed to be the only one from the UK. Well now, it was just meant to be now!
Have to ask what a "bit of a wobble" means?! I hope that engaging this heart community of Heart Brothers and Heart Sisters will help the "Wobble"!
You are right in telling "M" that we may be miles apart but are all in this together.
I hope that your time leading up to your surgery you find comfort in knowing you are not alone and this community of people are out here for you.
I am 65 yrs. old and have Aortic Stenosis and will have my surgery on Aug. 20th.
There are(as I am sure you are reading)
many of us heading to surgery and we will be here for you too.
So, take care of yourself and your lovely family and I look forward to reading about you and how you are doing. Have a good day!
m in cornwall posted a note for Rebecca that says:
Oh hi Rebecca - i felt i was the only person on this blog who lives in the UK. yes its a great web site not just for the blog but the links to information too. the blog itself has given me somewhere i can express my fears and also support other people going through the same surgery. its great to follow people as they approach their surgery and then their posts after their surgery. I'm undergoing surgery July 17 and there are a few others around the same time so it will be interesting to see the difference between experiences. take care and looking forward to your further blogs. from one heart sister to another