So, I am Liz, Renee's daughter, just giving an update and a little bite more I guess, so, here it goes. We got her around 7:40 and got checked it, it kind of seemed like it took forever, but they had to do what they had to do, then they took my dad and I back to hang out with her until it was time. She was kind of acting a little silly, but that could of been to releive her own stress about what is about to happen to her. We sat there a couple of hours until they took her away, we were able to join her to a certain point, but after that my dad and I had to sit in the waiting area, there they told us they will update us every three hours about how it's going. When I get home i'll post some pictures, only reason why i can't now is because i resolved in using the computers that they allow guest to use, the internet sucks here... at least on my mom's little computer...I might lag a little in giving updates because the computer that is good for this site is downstairs and out of the way and i have to make updates to a couple of other places. Thanks for supporting her.And sorry for grammar and spelling errors.
I have to be at the hospital at 8 am. The doctor has an emergency surgery first thing and then I'm next. I did the washes, made me itchy and sticky feeling. The nose ointment made my nose slimy and sticky at the same time. Slept good last night, didn't get to bed until late since I was reading.
Wow, tomorrow is the day. I have a lot that I want to do. But it snowed yesterday and my car is buried under snow and ice. Some of it will have to wait until my husband comes home to clear it off. I will probably walk across the street to the bank at some point, maybe when it warms up to I don't know, maybe 25, it was 4 when I got up. I've stocked up the freezer and cabinets with food for the family. I told them I expected a clean house when I get home. I skyped with my son last night and will try to tonight. Laundry is done, my small bag is packed. Bills are paid. I really just need to chill but I have a lot of nervous energy. Tonight before bed I will wash with the special wash and use the nasty nose stuff, repeat in the morning before heading to the hospital. Have to be there at 530. It is a 30 minute drive normally but the roads may be icy so we will have to leave early. Besides, only the front gate is open that early in the morning.
I had my pre op on the 19th. I was at the hospital for most of the day. My husband went with me. He did ok except when they drew blood and when we watched a video the doctor wanted us to watch. He was a little green then. We scoped out the food court at the hospital, he found out that there is a McDonald's across the street. Got to see CCU and the waiting area for families during surgery. It is nice, has a lot of plants and birds flying around, tables and sofas and wifi. He is going to get a parking pass since parking is $8 a day. I got a lot of information. The doctor gave me a nice chart of what to except on each day. Of course, it is just a guideline but it nice. It does say more that once that women should wear a bra.
So today is Sunday. The surgery is Wednesday and we have a snow storm coming in today/tomorrow. It is raining now, then we are suppose to have freezing rain, then sleet and finally heavy snow. And it is going to be cold. I don't do snow very well. Thanks goodness, they handle the snow very good here and the hospital only a 28 minute drive on a major highway.
That is about it. Hope everyone has a great evening!
My surgery is scheduled for March 5, I have to be at the hospital at 5:30 am.
They have scheduled me for pre op stuff on Feb 19.
1. Prep Center (pre op) register, chest xray, labs, etc.
2. Radiology for a CT scan with contrast. I really hate those because the contrast makes me want to pee.
3. Vascular Lab for a carotid study. Haven't had that done before. At least I don't remember it.
4. Meet with the surgeon's CRNP in the Cardiac Unit to update history and physical and answer any additional questions I may have.
Plus they need a dental clearance before the surgery. Lucky for me I am scheduled to go back to the dentist tomorrow and can get that taken care of.
Now to get the house organized and get mentally prepared. It didn't seem real until I got the dates. Now it is less than 30 days away. My Mom is coming to take care of me after I get out of the hospital. Husband and daughter have informed their employers and have gotten the day of the surgery and the day after off. Son talked to his Captain who said he could take a couple of days off but would have to be back by the weekend for training. I told him no, I don't want him missing classes since he is a honor student. Spring break he will be in Arizona for training so he won't be home then. If I'm feeling up to the trip Easter we will drive to Iowa to see him. It looks like most of his summer will be in training.
I've been stocking up on groceries because I am not going to feel like shopping afterwards and if I leave it up to the family, there will be nothing but beef and potatoes plus junk food in the house. Went ahead and did the taxes and need to work on the college financial aid packages this weekend.
I am still calm. I have full trust in my surgeon. And I've prayed about this a lot. I'm sure as it gets closer my nerves will get a little shaky.
Questions I had for the surgeon
1. What type of surgery? - Ascending Aortic Aneurysm repair/Ascending aortic aneurysm resection
2. Recovery time? - Hospital usually 5 - 7 days, then it will take approximately 2 - 3 weeks until I begin to feel up to the doing things.
3. Cardiac Rehab? No required but it is suggested.
4. Will I need to continue on the atenolol afterwards since I only take it to control my heart rate? - Will be most likley be in on something.
5. How soon afterwards will I be able to exercise, drive and work? 4 weeks on driving, walking as soon as I feel up to it, kickboxing will have to wait 8 - 10 weeks at least. Recommend 10 weeks on work but some go back earlier depending on job.
The incision will be 4 - 6 inches, Dr. Griffith attempts a smaller incision on females. He usually uses a Dacron graft to repair aneurysms but it depends on what it looks like when he gets in.
I called and let him know I wanted to have the surgery around the first week of March. I had hoped that my son would be home for spring break the week after I get home but he has training with ROTC and can't come home for spring break, I guess we will have to skype.
I saw my regular doctor in October for my medicine refill. She said I had to see the cardiologist since I'm suppose to be seen every 3 months for my aneurysm. I haven't been in 6 months. So in November I went a new cardiologist who I loved. She ordered an echo and a MRI. I went to the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore for the MRI. It was easy to get to and I had no problems parking. The doctor called me a couple of days later and told me it was time to go back to the surgeon. She put in a referral to see Dr Bartley Griffith at UMMC. Since it was almost Christmas I couldn't get an appointment until the first week of January which was fine since my son was home from college. The day of the appointment was bitter cold. Didn't have much of wait to see the doctor. I really liked him. After we talked some he showed me my MRI. It was an eye opener. The difference in the size of my ascending aorta from my descending was scary. It has not changed much in size but I am having symptoms. And he said the same thing as the Italian doctor. Because I am short and a woman I need surgery sooner than later. It said it was too big for my body size. I am overweight but my body structure is small. So the bad news is it is time to operate. The good news is my bicuspid valve looks good and does not need replacing. Yes, a lot of surgeons would go ahead and replace it but he feels like it is healthy enough to wait. Why do more than it needed. He gave me a time frame, told me to think about it and call the office. His nurse gave me her card and told me to email if I had questions, needed support, etc. He gave me a lot of information which I prompting forgot when I got outside in the cold and hit lunch time traffic. I don't think it really hit me what he said until I was out of traffic and almost home. It really hit me as I was going through the front gate on base. Of course, by that time the phone was ringing, my husband and then my Mom wanting to know how the appointment went. Yeah, freaked my husband out a little. Then phone really started ringing when my Mom told my sister. I was left with questions and little answers because I forgot to write anything down which is unusual for me.