I have experienced lingering pain in the soft tissue on both sides of my incision. In fact 2 months post-op I had a couple instances where it felt like I might have aggravated or torn the muscles a bit, doing things that I had been able to do since I first got home or was once out of the sternal precaution range. Have any of you out there felt soreness and pain in the soft tissue surrounding your incision? thanks
Hi all - started back to work this week, fortunately with flexible hours. Also started rehab on the 21st. Such a good team of physicians at Deaconess! I feel so lucky to be where I'm at on this journey. A little sore at times and don't always sleep as soundly as I would like, but overall doing pretty good. I have been out of the loop as I just don't have good Internet at home, but looking forward to checking in and trading info and tips with other patients. And cheering on the next group getting ready for their big day! Such a blessing to have it in the rear view mirror. I wish all good health and speedy recoveries!
Hi just checking in. Surgery went without any surprises. Afibbed second night but they got it under control pretty fast. Not too much discomfort where the incision is. Smaller than I expected. About 5 i nches. Had a very sore throat and irritated nose. Came home on the 6th day with a cold, which made it hard to sleep. First two nights awful but getting better each day. Last night was peaceful with no interruptions. Amazing. Hardest part is dealing with breathlessness. Using spirometer a lot. Not walking enough yet but keeping at it. Weather is awful cold so staying in. I can hardly believe I am on the other side. It feels a bit like a dream and a miracle both. So grateful for Adam's book and this website. It really prepared me for what was coming. Thank you all for the support- it made a big difference!
I've developed a dry cough I can't shake. I will try to see my doc tomorrow but was told once before it was an allergic cough because of my work environment which is dusty. I have also read that a chronic cough could be a symptom of heart disease. Has anyone gone into surgery with a cough?
Hi everyone - I just read the article about this procedure over using wires to reattach the sternum. Does anyone have experience with this? It sounds like a much better way to stabilize the sternum with better mobility, less pain and a shorter recovery period. But it also sounds like the majority of surgeons go with the wires instead. My surgery is in one week and I have a call out to my doc's nurse to find out more. This close to surgery day has me feeling pretty anxious. Any input on this alternative to wires would be greatly appreciated. thanks
I feel I'm being pretty pro-active about everything but wonder at how I'm really doing. Working every day tending to all the usual stuff. Reaching out to friends co- workers and family asking for prayers and building moral support. People on board with helping out. Hubby is being great. But I'm scared and in denial at the same time. I have nothing to compare this to and wonder at what I'm in for.
Hi, just came from seeing the cardiologist. He will do my heart cathe on Jan 26. I got the feeling he is not entirely on board with the surgery (Feb 14) because my symptoms are still pretty mild. It's mainly SOB after meals if I exert myself just doing regular stuff, and mild chest pain on the left side that comes and goes. My energy level may be going down a bit but overall I still feel pretty normal. I tried to be as honest as I could about my symptoms, so we are going forward, but I wondered if he thought I was 'jumping the gun'. Of course I didn't ask, because I really don't want to be talked into waiting. Although the OHS is nothing to look forward to, the idea of putting it off until my symptoms cannot be ignored has no appeal either. There was no doubt with the surgeon. He said sooner is better than later. For those who would like to weigh in, what has your experience been with when it was decided it's time to schedule? thanks in advance for any thoughts.
Here I am with my best friend of 40+ years, Deborah, riding a hot air balloon over Pagosa Springs, CO, taken last August
Date with the cardiologist
Journal posted on November 29, 2017
Hi there everyone - I see the cardiologist on Dec 15 to set up an appointment for a heart cathe. Still not sure what that does but something about making sure there are no clots? I still feel pretty good but seem have more shortness of breath upon exertion, and mild chest pains that come and go. I've actually had that for many years and had it checked out long before I even had a murmur. I never did get a firm answer on the cause - anything from anxiety to muscular-skeletal discomfort. I am staying calm, but of course now wonder if I'm putting myself at a bigger risk by waiting 2 more months. When does that pain become something to really worry about? Any thoughts?
October 28 visiting my brother and family in sunny California
Journal posted on October 26, 2017
Hi all - met with the surgeon on Tuesday for a consult/second opinion. He told me that I meet the criteria for surgery sooner than later (much to my relief). We have a tentative timeline of sometime in February. He said it's not an emergency - my symptoms are still mild. But he was very firm about there being no point in waiting. Since I still work I wanted to give my employer adequate notice so that we can get someone trained to cover for me while I'm out. Silly to be concerned about that but I love my job and my employers. Ultimately I may not have any control over when I go in. I was a little shocked - none of the health care professionals I had seen up to this point thought it was yet time to talk about surgery. I actually expected the surgeon to echo what I had already heard, but instead he gave me the answer I had been hoping for - let's get this fixed. I'm still processing it and now the cat is out of the bag - time to let others in. I've not wanted to face the fact this was coming, but I've thought about every day for more than a year now. whew.
Well got the results of my last echo - not so good. Severe aortic stenosis. Now what? I feel ok - relatively symptom-free. But I wonder about when do the docs decide it's time for surgery? Do I have to have heart failure first? What constitutes heart failure? I'm sort of freaking out.
Stenosis had not progressed as of April 11. Tried cholesterol drug to get my LDL the rest of the way down, but had some problems that may or may not been related to the medicine. So just doing it on my own, trying to correct my eating habits. Got my numbers down a bit more and seeing the doc tomorrow. Still feel pretty good but my legs give me the most trouble. Ankle swelling, aching - now I know the reason for my broken veins. But still exercising!