I’t’s been an eventful 24 hours. Yesterday I had my consultation with Dr. Doolabh and my head is just now clearing from the sedation of this morning’s heart cath procedure. The good news is that they found not blockages so it is only the valve that needs to be replaced. I’m waiting for confirmation but my surgery should be in mid February. Dr. Doolabh rates my chances of living through the surgery (I asked) as 99%. He also said that there are fewer complications with the technique he uses and that I should be able to resume my presurgery lifestyle once I recover from. I sure hope this is true. I will likely be going with the On-X mechanical. I have some concerns about the clicking and Warfarin management but these are outweighed by the potential of deterioration and ultimate replacement of a tissue valve. I don’’t want to go through this again or put my family through it again. I have goals on the other side of this. I just need to get there.
I had my consult with the cardiologist today. Since I'm asymptomatic, she said that I should plan on having my valve replaced in a 6-12 month timeframe. She also said that I'm an excellent candidate and she rates my prognosis as excellent. I hope so. I'll wait to see what the surgeon says. She also noted my anxiety and said that there is no value in waiting. Although I am still terrified by going under (I wish I wasn't but I'm being honest) I don't think I can deal with having this hanging over my head for much longer. I'm scheduled for a consult with a surgeon (Dr. Doolabh) on Monday and then a heart cath on Tuesday. I think things are going to move pretty fast from there.
I’m still waiting for my appointment with the cardiologist next week. Hopefully that will give me a better idea as to my surgery timeframe. In the meantime, I’ve tried to channel my anxiety by reading, researching, and walking. Today, I came across information about a minimally invasive approach done by Dr. Doolabh at UT Southwestern in Plano, TX claiming shorter time on the heart-lung machine and significantly shorter post op recovery time. Anyone else have experience with this?
So many things spin through my mind when I contemplate what's to come. A little more than a week ago I was blissfully going about my business, unafraid to climb a ladder, exercise, do yard work, etc. Now, I find myself unintentionally hyper aware of every bodily signal and likely over-interpreting their meaning . I hate it. I fear this will get worse once I get a valve. For those who have been post op for a while...does that go away after the healing is done or is it just something that will have to be managed?