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Heart Valve Surgery?
my Michelle wife, 36, has rheunatico fever. Cardiologistsuggest replacement surgery for aortic and mitral valve. If she doesn't has like 4-5 years to live with the last two years pretty bad. At the moment she exercise, dance ecc....nolegs swelling, no short breath, no fatigue, but last month experienced atrial fibrillation that went away by itlself in the ER. Now, the surgery is complicated and may ruin her life completely starting from the day after the surgery. if was you what decision would make. Surgery or not ?
Thank you Agostino Caserta
AmbassadorC, August 10, 2017 9:39pm EST
My apologies - I am not sure if the links came through on previous post, but I'm trying again below.
Christine Rekash Wagner – My Journey: Operation Backward Blood – Part 1
Christine Rekash Wagner – My Journey: Operation Backward Blood –Part 3
Christine Rekash - Top Ways In Which My Family Helped Me Heal
Christine Rekash - Heart Valve Disease Awareness Day is important to me because…
Christine Rekash Wagner – My Journey: Operation Backward Blood – Part 2
Christine Rekash – Questions I Asked Before Heart Surgery
A Story Of Setbacks. And A Strong Comeback.
AmbassadorC, August 10, 2017 9:19pm EST
Good evening Agostino -
Welcome sir to the support network. We are so glad that you are here as you are not alone. As Katie mentioned, there are many survivors here on the network that can be a source of support for not only you but for your wife as well. I am a survivor of mitral valve disease. My journey began at a routine physical where my PCP informed me that I had a heart murmur. That being said, I was in my young 30s and had no idea what that meant for me or my future. Being referred to a cardiologist, I was told that I had mitral valve prolapse. Again, not knowing or realizing that the palipitations that I was experiencing , was attributed to this new diagnosis for me. I was given the option to take beta blockers to "treat" these symptoms, however, I was uncomfortable with that type of generalized prescription. I went to seek a second opinion of a cardiologist that agreed to keep a watchful eye on my disease. Yearly echos, stress tests and further examination revealed that I was developing a leaking mitral valve. Within a period of 2 short years my cardiologist recommended it was "time" for a repair. Externally, I began to develop more fatigue, shortness of breath and palipitations that I just attribute to the everyday stresses of life, but internally my heart exhibited signs of working harder, my left atrium and ventricle became dilated, pressure in my lungs began to increase and more blood flow was leaking backwards. While having open heart surgery is something that no one wants to hear, based on my experience, I am very fortunate that my cardiologist made the recommendation when he did.
I too, like your wife, thought that having surgery to repair my valve disease would limit my lifestyle. I was a very healthy, active, non smoker, blood pressure within limits, no chloesrtol issues, no diabetics or any meds besides my heart valve issue. I struggled with having surgery at such an early age, as we often think of heart surgery for the elderly. What I can tell you is that her life does not have to be destined to limitations. While I am not providing you with medical advice, what I can tell you based on my experience is that you must be your own advocate. I have learned that Having valve disease can often times be over looked because externally we do not attribute our symptoms to heart disease. Having a cardiologist that both of you can trust and develop a relationship with is key to a successful outcome for her. Encourage her to get checked out and tested. While the afib may have gone away for the moment on its own, it could be the early signs of a larger issue that is happening internally when externally, she feels "fine" .
Please encourage her to join the network as well. The AHA has a great resource and educational center re additional information that she can begin to research. With that knowledge she can become more informed as well as begin to track her symptoms and present that to her cardiologist.
Lastly, here is a link to my story that if you would like to share with her, may give her inspiration to life after heart surgery not being destined to a life of limitations.
· CHRISTINE REKASH WAGNER – MY JOURNEY: OPERATION BACKWARD BLOOD –PART 3
· CHRISTINE REKASH WAGNER – MY JOURNEY: OPERATION BACKWARD BLOOD – PART 2
· CHRISTINE REKASH WAGNER – MY JOURNEY: OPERATION BACKWARD BLOOD – PART 1
1 Story of Survival
· A STORY OF SETBACKS. AND A STRONG COMEBACK.
AHAASAKatie, August 9, 2017 9:13am EST
Thank you so much for posting this! We have many people on the Support Network who have successfully undergone heart valve replacement and have an excellent quality of life. We have several heart valve ambassadors who come onto the Support Network and share their stories and help with these types of questions. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/HeartValveProblemsandDisease/Heart-Valve-Disease-Personal-Stories_UCM_467172_Article.jsp#.WYsJ2VV97IU
While none of us can tell you want to do, we can listen and help you figure out the right questions to be asking. What does her medical team say about life post surgery?