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JoelKahl54, January 2,  2020  4:11pm EST

Fear of leaving my Best friend

So much info out there on Life expectancy with an EF of 34 after Mitral Valve repair how do I know what is right or wrong or am I just over thinking this?  I wish I could talk to my wife but alas I am her Superman and don't want to make her worry.  Any ideas to overcome the Fear ?

8 Replies
  • Catty350
    Catty350, January 2,  2020  5:09pm EST

    Have you had a conversation with your cardiologist about this? If not, make an appointment to have this discussion.  There are ways to improve your ER percentage.  After my mitral valve repair, I was told to exercise, lose some weight and watch my salt intake. It's not easy and won't happen overnight, but it's doable. Good luck.


  • JoelKahl54
    JoelKahl54, January 3,  2020  8:56am EST

    Yes I have talked to my Cardiologist he is little help did say to exercise that I am doing.  Said it may or may not come back.  Drs are so much about moving on to the next patient little in the way of Empathy.  My weight is good 5'10 and 180 lbs.  Thank you Catty350

  • AHAASAKatie
    AHAASAKatie, January 4,  2020  8:17am EST

    Thank you so much for sharing how you are feeling. I can provide the information we have on heart valve disease, surgery and recovery.  Please know that we are here for you and do understand what is happening in your world. Best Katie

  • AmbassadorMR
    AmbassadorMR, January 4,  2020  10:46am EST

    Hi Joel,

    First off, no you are not "over thinking" your condition or your feelings about it. All of us who go through the challenges and emotions of heart valve disease and its treatment can fully relate to what you are going through. You haven't provided some key information about the severity (pre-op) of your mitral valve leaking or what type of "repair" was done to correct it. Also how long has it been since the procedure and did you complete a full cardiac rehab program afterwards?

    An ejection fraction of 34 is certainly not ideal but it may improve with a dedicated program of proper (and monitored) cardio exercise and full lifestyle adjustments. This will give you the best opportunity to improve your overall heart health and thereby your mitral valve performance. Did your surgeon tell you that the repair was fully successful?

    I know I'm asking a lot of questions but it's important to understand the context of how you have arrived at this place in your disease, treatment and recovery journey. We as Heart Valve Ambassadors have been where you are and we will support you in any manner that we can here on the site as you find your best path to the best recovery possible for you. I wish you strength and resolve as you move ahead.

    Yours In Heart Health,


  • AmbassadorB
    AmbassadorB, January 4,  2020  6:02pm EST


    Welcome to the "club".  Anyone who has run the course - as we all have, and is not fearful, concerned, or uneasy about what lies ahead is "out to lunch".   Or; not interested in taking the right course of action - to reinforce his quality of life.    Ambassador MR gave you some valuable points and exercise can't be over done!  You should be involved in regular, monitored (a qualified instructor) exercise.   It will save your life!   A  full, completed cardiac rehab program is a must and should be viewed as the beginning of a full blown exercise program  for you.   Your physical condition and any post operative questions or discomfort should be discussed with the professional rehab staff.     One way to keep your wife "up to speed" with your current concerns and not worry her - would be to have her participate with you in regular work outs.   She doesn't have to do the same exercises as you, in fact it is better that she have her own program.   But, getting her involved in a regular workout program, two or three times a week is a smart activity for both of you.   As a minimum, it is a way for the two of you to share your reactions to certain moves, levels of effort, etc.   "Boy, those 2 minute Planks that I did today sure were tough for me.   My stomach and back were talking to me.  Must have been that banana split that I had!   What  did you work on, today, dear?  Any reaction from the fancy deserts?"   Get out, Get Active, and enjoy life - with your lady!

    Joel - your're at the doorway to a wonderful life.  Enjoy it with your loved one - together.

    Ambassador B 


  • JoelKahl54
    JoelKahl54, January 5,  2020  6:18pm EST

    Thank you all your comments help greatly

  • JoelKahl54
    JoelKahl54, January 5,  2020  6:31pm EST

    Been almost 2 years since my repair and yes the surgeon told me it was a success.  Had some issues with Afib after but only for a couple of weeks.  I was an ultra marathon runner for years prior to my Valve repair and still have a handle on my weight and work out 4 times a week weights and arobic but still have issues with anything over 5 mph for more than a mile.  I will continue to push forward.   

  • AmbassadorB
    AmbassadorB, January 6,  2020  7:52pm EST


    Have you taken any action to get your lady into some workout program - where you can share your moves and results?   It would be a bold move and you're apt to hear some negative comments, but sitting up in the bleachers where I am, it seems like a good course of action.  

    All the best!

    Ambassdor B

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