Twelve weeks post-op (isn't it?)

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Peter Easton

Guest
Hi friends --

Just reporting in as I come up on three months post-operation. Had mine on September 3rd -- AVR with a Hancock Medtronics porcine valve. Convalesence went very well and I returned to work (part-time at first) in mid-October. I am now back on the job full-time and doing famously. I haven't undertaken any organized cardiac rehab, but I do walk about 3 brisk miles four or five times a week and have resumed my beloved landscaping/yard work in the cool weather of north Florida autumn.

My stamina continues to improve and, after a return appointment with the cardio next month, I hope to be able to start jogging, something I haven't done for eight or ten years since my aortic stenosis was first diagnosed.

The only downside is this whopper of a scar. It was/is a Halloween costume in and of itself! I posted some things about Keloid scarring pre-op, since I am subject to that kind of thick and raised scar tissue, and some folks with similar leanings responded and offered a few counsels. But I don't seem to have avoided it and have a real foot-long relief map of a memento from stem to stern on my sternum. It binds some and itches and pains a bit. I have an (already-scheduled) appointment with my dermatologist next week and will see what he has to say. It's a small price to pay, though, for feeling so chipper and having gotten through the valve replacement with such flying colors.

This variety of valve (Hancock Medtronics porcine), which is treated in some ways to retard calcification, has been demonstrated to last some 15-18 years in folks of my age and stage. Hope my Mother's good genes, and the good Lord's grace, carry me through so that I can have another surgery in (say) 2016 and then start counting again! By that time it ought to be possible to do this whole thing by laproscopy.

Best to one and all and lots of good cheer to those now approaching their operation.

Peter
 
Last edited:

RobThatsMe

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 11, 2001
Messages
1,439
Location
USA - TN
Hi Peter,

Glad to hear that everything is coming along just fine for you! I hope the positive trend continues for you.

Wishing you and your family a festive and joyous holiday season!

Rob
 

sylviayasgur

VR.org Supporter
VR.org Supporter
Joined
Sep 1, 2001
Messages
2,281
Location
Westchester, NY
hi peter!
so good to hear from you; i was wondering how you were. i'm so glad to hear your recovery has been an uneventful, smooth and speedy one.
hope you and your family have a happy and healthy thanksgiving and please keep in touch.
be well,
sylvia
 
M

McCln

Guest
Peter

Peter

I really have no problem with mine. I had repair at age eight, so the second on is over the previous cut. I still have some problems with it as far as being a woman goes. You would have to guess the problem. But I had a hole problem before surgery and it has come per say. I will be going back to doctor Friday. and will mention it to him on what to do about it. The skin heals and then is able to be peeled. It is healing but it is worrisome. I will get with you on that later. You keep hang in there and good luck with the derm doc. I had to go with a diferent skin problem and they don't know what causes it. So don't feel bad, and wear the scar as a badge of the trauma you went through to still be alive. You are doing great. Keep doing what you have to to be strong in body as well in the mind.

Caroline
09-13-01
Aortic valve replacement
St. Judes' valve
 
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Peter Easton

Guest
Thanks, Caroline. Now let me see, what could a woman's angle on this chest scar issue be .. hmmm.

Seriously, though, I do hope that the scars will minimize themselves for all of us. The problem in my case is the formation of keloid scars, which tend to be distinctly raised, shiny and .. long-lasting. I had some from teenage acne on my back that lasted probably twenty-five years and are still evident to the educated eye. One on my upper arm from a skin cancer removal seven or eight years ago hasn't gone down more than a notch or two. Should be some ray gun that would zap them, don't you think?

Peter
 
K

Kevin M

Guest
Peter, a guy I work with had a keloid scar on his earlobe. It was a nasty looking thing that caused him some physical discomfort, but it bothered him that people stared at it.

He had it removed a couple of weeks ago. They basically cut it out (a few stitches) and treated him the following day with localized radiation. They are saying there is a 20% chance it could come back to it's normal size, but so far he's extremely happy.

I don't know what they could do with a chest scar, but if yours is anything like my friends' ear, it must be very bothersome.

Kev
 
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Peter Easton

Guest
Thanks, Kev, for the suggestion. I'll ask my dermatologist when I see him tomorrow. I guess I have reasoned that since keloid scarring comes from cutting things out, cutting out the scar itself would just produce another one at least as bad.

If all else fails, I'll just consider it my red badge of courage, worth free admission to the vr.com reunions!

Peter
 

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