During this year (2021) I ran in seventeen 5K races. Gradually moving up to my goal to run in a marathon. Since the aortic valve replacement (2 years ago), running and crossfit are fun and an essential part of my day. I lost 70 lbs. in 6 months which is a big help.
Exciting news! I was selected by the Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN) to take part in a trial study. Starting next week, I will be off the Warfarin and switching over to Eliquis (twice daily). I will no longer have to monitor my INR and make adjustments based on vitamin K & alcohol consumption (drink responsibly). The study is expected to last a couple of years, and I am excited about participating in this investigation.
Surgery was on Friday, Sept 13 and I was out of the St Marys Hospital by Wednesday, Sept 18. Ann and I stayed an extra 2 days in Rochester, MN to check on my INR values. I am VERY pleased with the outcome. Hardly any discomfort when coughing, sneezing, and laughing. I am no longer retaining water weight, I no longer suffer from fatigue that I would encounter during the day before the surgery. I no longer have feelings of being light-headed. I no longer crave caffeine and over eat during the day. I no longer have occasional chest pains. My resting pulse no longer goes below 60 BPM. I no longer feel palpitations. My blood pressure is consistently within the normal range. I am very excited about how young I am starting to look and feel. This is the best thing I have done to improve my health and extend my life. I don’t have coronary heart disease, however I still watch my sodium and calorie/fat intake. I don’t know exactly how long my aortic valve regurgitation has been a problem but, despite the severe regurgitation with an enlarged left ventricle, my incredible heart had managed to maintain a normal ejection fraction and shows no signs of failure. I will starting rehabilitation and I am looking forward to running, conditioning, and weight training.
Surgery was successful and now I am out of the hospital
Journal posted on September 18, 2019
WOW! That was quite an experience. Surgery started on time Friday, Sept 13, 8:30AM. I was in recovery by 1:05PM and the breathing tube was removed at 4:05PM. I had the ON-X aortic valve prosthesis installed. Everything went as planned. I was moved to a room with monitoring the following morning. I experienced a brief episode of A-Fib which was remedied with an IV drug. No need for any narcotic strength pain medication after Friday which was good. Up and walking the next day. Excellent care staff at The Mayo Clinic/St. Marys Hospital. I followed all instructions and I was released from the hospital on Day 5. My surgeon was very pleased with the outcome and my progress. I had requested that he get some pictures of my heart and the valve which I can share in personal email requests from anyone who is interested – fascinating stuff. I actually lost 11 lbs in what I think was water weight collected over time as a result of the aortic valve insufficiency. Post-operative Echocardiogram and x-rays look good. I will have my INR checked again tomorrow. Having my family with me helped a lot, knowing what to expect was much appreciated, and a sense of humor, patience, and a faith and trust in the professionals all made this well, not fun but, as good as possible.
Hello Everyone, I want to thank Adam Pick for this excellent connecting/resource site. I am 55 years old and recently diagnosed with AR due to a leaky valve. Apparently I was born with this condition and I had attributed symptoms to being out of shape and/or age. I like to run everyday and my slow resting pulse may be the result of vagal toning but we are not sure. Based on my understanding, the doctors recommend AV replacement based on the severity of the leak and the presence of symptoms, LV size and ejection numbers are "normal". It sounds to me like this condition was caught before permanent heart injury developed. I am meeting with a cardiologist and a heart surgeon at The Mayo Clinic. I am interested in finding out about non or not so intrusive AV repair options. I welcome responses. I will post updates as I find out more information.