Six years after having my aortic and mitral valves replaced with bovine valves, my cardiologist is detecting a higher velocity in the aortic valve? I had an echo a couple of months ago and he wants me to repeat it. I am experiencing symptoms like I did six years ago, especially being short of breath. I had a CT scan with contrast and there is fluid in my lungs so I've been on fureosimde the last few weeks. It hasn't helped. Looking for thoughts from the community.
This is Beckie, Larry's wife. I wrote similar news last night; but I'm not sure it got posted ... so Larry told me how to do it through "Journal"
Larry's surgery took 2.5 - 3 hours longer than anticipated, so I'm very late in getting everyone caught up on the results ...
The surgeon didn't anticipate that Larry's heart would be so small - much smaller than he had imagined, so it took extra time to maneuver in such a small space to replace the two valves. The surgery was successful, though, and the surgeon felt that a full recovery is to be expected.
Larry will have the breathing tube removed a day later than planned, as well. This is because the tube is normally removed 4-6 hours after the completion of surgery; but that make it into the evening, and the surgeon wanted more support staff around when the tube was removed (not just the skeletal evening staff).
I went in briefly to the Cardiac Critical Care Unit to see him and talked with the attending nurse. Larry looked good (valium does wonders!!).
Any reason why I'm willing to submit to this "cardiac intervention"? My granddaughter Andelyn, aka Andee, aka the wild and crazy one! (They are in China right now, which is why there are so many Chinese in the video :)
It's official, I'm a "marked" man. Had my 3 hour pre-op visit this afternoon and I'm now wearing my wrist band identifying who I am all weekend. They took a chest x-ray, poked, prodded, drew blood, made me breath into two different machines and watch a video starring my surgeon. This wrist band is quite the fashion statement. I'm sure I'll get my share of questions at Church on Sunday. As I was reading the infection instructions it says that if the band falls off I have to do all the tests over again before the surgery on Monday. Superglue anyone? It's also my reminder that this is really happening on Monday. Let the adventure begin!
My 2 1/2 year old granddaughter drew this masterpiece for my hospital room! I see that I'm now on the leader board and pre-op appointment is today. Here we go on another adventure!
Update posted on...
June 18, 2015
I was enjoying ice cream at Cold Stone Creamery when my phone rang and it was an unknown number. I know from experience that it's Providence Oregon calling. Wonderful, here is someone calling me to tell me that my surgery is postponed, I thought out loud, loud enough to scare my daughter! Wrong! It was someone from the heart and vascular research department asking me if I wanted to participate in a research study of a new machine they are field testing in the CICU that monitors your blood glucose level continuously. I thought that might mean fewer finger sticks and it might but it does sound like cool technology and me being a gadget guy I said why not sign me up :)
A good friend of mine had an aortic aneurysm repaired a few months ago and we were talking about things that he didn't expect and he mentioned shoulder pain which happened, he thought, because they have to move your shoulders out of the way for the surgery? And he said they pricked his fingers at least once an hour while he was in the hospital? Anyone here with those experiences? I'm feeling pretty calm about my upcoming surgery but now I'm starting to get a little nervous.
I'm really struggling with making a decision between mechanical or biological valves. Talking with my "bestie" (can a guy say that?) tonight I realized that I don't want to make a decision because when I make a decision that means it's really going to happen. I've now made a decision and will take that to my Heavenly Father tonight in prayer to confirm my decision and then move forward and find joy in the journey with an attitude of gratitude. Enough cliches!
What everyone one going through this needs,motivation! A new Chipotle Mexican restaurant is opening about a half mile from my home. Now I have a goal after surgery, to be able to walk there, eat a great meal, and walk home! Bonus, my wife bought me a gift card!
Random thought for the day. Assuming that they allow TAVR for healthy people within 10 years or so, is TAVR only for the aortic valve? I'm going to have both valves replaced, can TAVR be used to replace the mitral valve or just the aortic valve? If only the aortic, then it doesn't matter how long a tissue valve lasts if they still have to perform OHS to replace the mitral valve. Which makes mechanical valves the better option. Unless I'm totally off base.
Many people have had open heart surgery for many different reasons. I am a proud member of the zipper club and want to share this new design with you all. We have to reach a goal of 50 sold by June 24th in order for our t-shirts to print and ship. Please note your t-shirts will only be sent when the campaign closes on June 24th AND will only be sent if we reach our goal of 50! Your credit card will only be charged once we hit our goal and your t-shirt is sent for delivery. So come on all my heart brothers and sisters. Lets buy our shirts wear them proudly and show the world our courage!!!
Here's something I haven't read about yet: what if I decide on a mechanical valve and I have a reaaction to the warfarin I will have to take for the rest of my life? For those of you who are taking warfarin I'd appreciate any feedback you can share with me.
Cardiologist with Providence Heart and Vascular Institute say they have successfully used a novel procedure to replace a woman's heart valve while she was pregnant, minimizing risk to her and her baby.
My surgeon prescribed some meds to take before my surgery: 1 mg folic acid, 1000 mgs of Vitamin C, and 325 mgs of ferrous sulfate (iron). I assume this is standard operating (pun intended) procedure? I'm OK with the folic acid and C, but I read that taking more iron is because some heart patients are anemic? My last fasting blood labs (two weeks ago) showed that my iron level is 4.4 out of 5.5. I'm definitely not anemic, is there another reason I should be taking the iron? I'm concerned about the "side effects".
I seem to be in a "sweet spot" age wise. At age 60 I can go one of two ways for valve replacement, mechanical or biological. If I was in my 50's I'd choose mechanical, in my late 60's I'd choose biological and roll the dice that technology will improve so I won't have be to cracked open a 2nd time. Any advice?