I must apologize....I haven't felt like posting until now. It's been 6 weeks since my worn out Bicuspid Aortic Valve was replaced with a new Titanium/Cow Tissue Valve via a less invasive procedure. My incision is only 2.5 inches long, they cut and moved one rib, then fused it back with titanium screws. Because of this procedure I had very little chest pain afterwards. The surgery went very smooth and took less than 4 hours. The hospital staff told us it was "textbook perfect". By the way, the Surgeons and staff at Long Beach Memorial were excellent....I always felt safe and well taken care of. I went home after only 4 days and felt surprisingly good. We started walking the next day and soon worked up to 30 minute walks. But as the days went by I started getting sicker, weaker, and breathing became a struggle. Also started to rapidly gain weight. Turned out I had pneumonia. Ended up spending 5 more days in the hospital getting pumped full of antibiotics. They also "tapped" my lung and drained out almost a pint of excess fluid.
The pneumonia really set me back and was disappointing because I felt so good the first few days after getting home. But the good news is it's over. It feels good to feel like me again. Feels good to do simple things like "breathing". My new Trifecta Valve is pumping at a nice steady beat...I can sometimes hear it at night. Blood pressure is perfect. I just walked 1.5 miles at a fairly quick pace without getting short of breath. Before the surgery I'd get tired and short of breath just walking a block.
Looking forward to starting my cardiac physical therapy next week to build my strength back. All will be good from here on.
There is no way I'd be able to do this on my own. It's been quite a struggle at times, and it can be very discouraging. My wife Eve has been by my side every step of the way, before, during, and after. Through the up times, and the down times. Helping me physically and emotionally. I know these kind of things are very hard on the caretaker too. Thank you Honey for everything you done and continue to do for me.
Bottom line....I'm so glad I had this done...even with the setbacks. I feel so much better now than I did before. If your facing valve replacement in your future....I can tell you it's not easy...but it's well worth it.
It's Wednesday night....two days after heart surgery. Other than being tired and sore...I feel pretty good for a guy that just had a new cow valve installed through a 3 inch chest incision. First a of all I sincerely want to thank you all for your prayers, goog thoughts, encouragement, and advice. Knowing I'm not the only one out there who had to get an aortic valve replaced is very comforting. I'm going home tomorrow and will write more details of the last days after I can sit down in front of a "real" keyboard.....Im not a big
fan of typing on glass. Thanks again....
My Heart Surgery is Monday morning. Even though I knew this surgery would happen "someday" in the future....it's hard to realize the future is already here. Can't say I'm looking forward to this... but I'm am very much looking forward to feeling good and strong again. We are confident with our Surgeon, the procedure, the staff, and the hospital. At this point my attitude is "Let's Do This" because I'm anxious to start the recovery process. I'm thankful to have my wife Eve, the same girl I fell in love with in 3rd grade by my side to help me through this. And to my Daughters, Grandkids, Siblings, my entire Family and all my Friends...I Thank You all for your Prayers. And to the other patients on this site...thank you. Hearing about your surgeries has eased my nervousness and given me the encouragement I need.
Had an Angiogram Friday. It was a long day but well worth it because it confirmed my Surgeon will be able to replace my Aortic Valve by the less invasive procedure....good news. Yesterday we had our Pre-Op meeting at the Hospital. The nurses and staff were very reassuring and went into great detail of what to expect during and after surgery on Monday. I feel very confident...but scared. This waiting is really hard. Funny how I can get busy running errands during the day and almost forget about the surgery. Then it hits me like a brick when I realize it's less than a week away.
My Bicuspid Aortic Valve served me well for 59 of my 60 years. I've been symptom free up until this past year. My shortness of breath and fatigue prove that my original valve is worn out, it's time to go aftermarket. We decided on the Trifecta valve, made with a titanium frame and young cow heart tissue. Angiogram is May 30th. Pre-Op meeting June 2nd, surgery is June 9th.
Obviously I'd rather not be going through this, but since I have to, I feel fortunate to be living in a time when an Aortic valve can be replaced with a less invasive procedure. They almost make it sound routine. But we all know it's far from routine to the person laying on the table.
We had an excellent meeting with our Surgeon, he answered most of my questions before I asked. I have complete confidence in the Doctor, the staff, and the procedure. I've heard so many say the waiting is the hardest part, now I know what they mean. I just want to get past the surgery and start the recovery.