Cleveland Clinic Questions

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Cactus52

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You are on my exact schedule that I had last year. You'll do great and once recovered you'll feel fantastic, the waiting is the hardest part!!!
 

caro

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Wishing you the best! Dr. Johnston was my surgeon last year. You’re definitely in great hands.
 

BillDaThrill

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At CC. Day1 test day. Tomorrow Cath day. Wed consult day. Thurs surgery with Dr. Johnston.
A month ago I had the same schedule at the CC - subbing in Dr. Svensson for Dr. Johnston. You're going to do great! Best of luck on the heart cath results and have your questions ready for Wednesday. Hoping everything goes as well for you as it did for me there!
 

Unicusp

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Good luck! You're in great hands!
Suggestion; if they did the cath in your right wrist, before surgery, request that the anesthesiologist go in thru your left hand.
I had a swollen painful right wrist after surgery due to both procedures too close to each other.
 

Croooser

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Made it to the other side. Cath went well ....into wrist and no damage from the cath. Big Bonus...only 20% blockage in one artery despite dominant family history...both my father and his father were cardiac cripples for several years before cardiovascular disease killed them. Also only 20-39% blockage in carotids---70% is the threshold for surgery here. No bypass or stents for me. I attribute this to 25 years of statens.

Surgery went well Resilia valve and dacron graft for aorta. Pre surgery Doctor Johnson said he thought it would be size 25 and that TAVR is a possibility if I outlive the valve.

Some kind of issue with platelets being low keeping me in step down for now.
 

Unicusp

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Excellent news. Glad to hear. Enjoy the accommodations.
Did you have a full or mini sternotomy?
 

Chuck C

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Dec 5, 2020
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Fantastic! Welcome to the other side and all the best for a speedy recovery!

If you find the time, please keep us posted on how your recovery is going.
 

Keithl

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Apr 20, 2019
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Great news! I love Cleveland Clinic, no offense to OH, but if it were in a better state (many factors, climate being first) I would move there to be near such excellent facility.
 

Croooser

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OK. A little more info:

7/15 Surgery with Douglas Johnston the lead
7/16 ICU/Step Down
7/17 - 7/19 Step Down
7/19 - 7/21 Hotel
7/21 Final tests and exit interview
7/22 Fly home to central FL

From the Procedure Report (note a few changes)

Incision Start: 8:29AM - Incision Close 11:42 AM

Inspiris Resilia 27MM

Ascending Aortic repair - GELWEAVE 30MM

Bicuspid Valve

J- Incision (Upper Hemisternotomy)

No pacing wires

Sponge/Instrument/Needle counts: Final Counts Correct
 

Croooser

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Apparently, the platelet level issue is a normal response of the body to the surgery. Anyway, it resolved itself in a few days.

No major post op issues. Perhaps a little bit of nerve damage in my upper back but not enough to be a concern if it does not go away.

SOB and fatigue is an issue - certainly much greater than pre-op as my symptoms were minor pre-op. Got to think I am paying a price for age there. I am managing a 15 minute 3/4 mile walk each morning before dawn (don't want to try walking with the sun out down here right now). It wears me out. Planning to add to the duration gradually.

Getting a variation of SOB a few hours after I go to bed at night. Find myself having to reach for deep breaths. Reminds me of sleeping at high altitudes. So, I sit in an upright chair for an hour or two and it subsides.

I am 71 and 2 weeks post op. I am hoping that I will gradually feel better and breathe better with a little more time.


My wife and I both feel that the CC delivered on it's reputation in our experience. It definitely is a well oiled machine. We were frequently struck with the impression that everyone has a specialized job to do and is very, very good at it.

The one issue the CC is still working to resolve is getting restaffed after COVID. In conversation with different staff, they indicated that the shutdown reductions have not been completely filled in. I experienced a number of techs in buddy system training, including one therapist.

I paid the price for the staffing issues on my first night in step down. A malfunctioning (fentanyl?) device set off a LOUD alarm every half hour or so all night. I must have pressed the nurse call button 15 times that night. Each time the night nurse (after a delay while the alarm continued) shut off the alarm and changed nothing else. I was too groggy to figure out what to request, but she should have just pulled the machine and switched to some oral pain killer as a sub. I got very little sleep at a time when I really needed it. In the AM I struck a bargain with the day nurse to remove that machine from my life forever and to let me spend much of the day sleeping even though that was the day I was supposed to start some activities.

We saw no indication that the staffing issues exist anywhere above - say the NP level.

Hope that this is helpful for anyone heading down this path soon.

Regards,

Mike
 

TellTaleHeart

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Thanks and best wishes. As I consult/interview surgeons I ask their opinions on future impact of COVID on scheduling surgery. So far they say they’re not expecting any. Hope they’re right.
 

BillDaThrill

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Great to hear your satisfaction with the Cleveland Clinic and that your recovery is underway. I remember early on that the sun outside the CC would wear me down like kryptonite during my walks. That went away too. You're going to be feeling better every day. Keep on walking, maybe set some goals. Keep us posted.
 

Croooser

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Went to my Cardiologist for 3 month post op follow up yesterday to review first post op echo and got a clean bill of health. He said that the valve looks good and is working well and that the graft looks fine as well. AVA is now 2.98 cm2, mean gradient is now 7mmHg, peak gradient is now 13mmHg. No leakage at the valve and no issues detected.

Side note - my cardiac cath at CC indicated only 20% blockage in only one artery. So it seems that my cardiovascular disease is being well controlled with statins.

Unless something unforeseen (and unwanted) develops, I am now on a once a once a year echo schedule to monitor and make sure that I stay stable.

I am thinking that if the Inspiris Resilia performs as expected, that, given my age, I won't have to deal with the valve for at least 15 years and that I can relax and not focus on it in the mean time - assuming that I last that long. o_O Here's hoping that I am right about that.

Thanks again for all of the input and support. It was greatly appreciated.
 

tom in MO

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Jan 17, 2012
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Location
MO USA
...I am thinking that if the Inspiris Resilia performs as expected, that, given my age, I won't have to deal with the valve for at least 15 years and that I can relax and not focus on it in the mean time - assuming that I last that long. o_O Here's hoping that I am right about that...
Glad to hear things are fine. Don't sweat it, the older you are the longer the tissue valve lasts, thus at 71, this will probably be one and done for you.
 
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