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  1. #1
    Join Date
    All Over

    Now for the rest of the story

    The good news---I am home and feeling fine

    I should have been home yesterday but I hit a rough spot in the road. I'll make this short and then get on with the really interesting part of this story.

    I have come to find out that I have a reaction to the general anesthesia drugs that seem to be commonly used--they swell my prostrate gland making it difficult/impossible to pass urine. My surgeries in Sept of last year were not an issue because I had a catheter in for at least a week in ICU. It was a problem in Nov when I went back for the skin graft, but it cleared itself after a day or two of discomfort.

    This time was worse and it took me far too long to convince the medical staff that I was in serious distress. They did an ultra scan of my bladder and said there was only 260 ml in my bladder. I finally prevailed and they inserted a catheter and drained out 1400 ml! I had immediate relief and over the next 12 hours life improved

    Now---to the good stuff---and this is quite amazing to me. I had a device called a Watchman implanted, there is a link in the other thread.
    WATCHMAN™ The left atrial appendage (LAA) is a small sac in the top left chamber in the heart. If you have atrial fibrillation (afib), an irregular heart beat does not allow blood to pump efficiently out of the heart. Blood can pool in the LAA, leading to high risk of blood clots and ultimately stroke
    This clotting issue is why I have been on blood thinners, which as everyone knows, damn near killed me last fall. The watchman will allow me to stop using the blood thinners.

    Now to the amazing story, which only unfolded to me on Tuesday: the doctor that was in charge of this procedure is only one of three doctors involved---thus they do this procedure only the second Tuesday of each month to avoid their own scheduling issues. They do a maximum of four each month---I was number four for March. Total to date 86.

    The "team" breaks down into a "cameraman/director" who went in through my mouth with a scope, and I believe an ultra sound, and somehow directs (I didn't get much understandable description of exactly how he does that).

    The other two take up positions on each side, one entered a major vein in my lower abdomen , the second entered my femoral artery on the opposite side of my abdomen. First they go in and check out the job site. The opening that they are about to block has to be measured to determine the appropriate size device, of which there are four. The average opening is about the diameter of a quarter.

    Once they have sized up the opening they then take the device in--which I will describe as a tiny umbrella which is closed up. They place the umbrella in the opening---and working together they open the device with the handle end pointed into the chamber. They now pull that back lodging it into the opening--they might sew it in place but I am not sure of that.

    OK---now comes the magic part----I will continue taking warfrain (blood thinner) for 45 days---at which time they have some way of determining success----by verifying that your heart has done its part---by growing over the device and sealing the opening to the left atrial appendage---and they have a success rate of just over 94% of that happening

    My is off to all the people that come up with this stuff---I still find it hard to believe some of these things---and then, in this case backing out, and allowing the body to have the "last word"

    Not until I was proofing this write up did I realize, I said nothing about "after effects" and pain---because for me there have been NONE The most discomfort was this morning when the Nurse Practitioner pulled the tape off the two entry points---I literally feel nothing---no pain--no discomfort---nothing

    Science is truly am amazing thing

    I am back to work next week and my only restriction is lifting anything over 10 pounds.
    Last edited by Dave Grubb; 03-14-2019 at 02:49 PM.
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty” ---Sir Winston Churchill

    "Political extremism involves two prime ingredients: an excessively simple diagnosis of the world's ills, and a conviction that there are identifiable villains back of it all." ---John W. Gardner

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apache Junction, AZ
    Good news, Dave.

    "Everyday I beat my own previous record for number of consecutive days I've
    stayed alive."

    trump inspires me everyday...inspires me to vote blue...inspires me to call out the insanity... inspires me to push back against any and all supporters of the small handed orange clown

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Great news and an interesting procedure.
    The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible - Arthur C. Clarke

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Glad things went well for you.
    OPINION....a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    In the Village...
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Grubb View Post
    I am back to work next week and my only restriction is lifting anything over 10 pounds.
    There's a punchline to that one, but I'm not going to take unfair advantage here...I'll just say welcome back to the workaday world......Ben
    The future is forged on the anvil of history...The interpretation of history becomes the hammer... - Unknown author...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Livermore Valley near the wine grapes
    so if you can't lift over 10 pounds then I guess the barkeep will be pouring good whiskey for you....
    "The only thing that we learn from torture is the depths of our own moral depravity"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    San Antonio, Tx.
    An engineer has to appreciate a fine job of fixing a physical problem.
    "Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority.... There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters." 
~~ Daniel Webster

  8. #8
    Join Date
    All Over
    First---to the punchline--which was in my head and perched on the end of my tongue when the NP, who was a stunning lady, gave me those instructions---but I managed to hold back

    As for Joe's comment: you are correct, I found this entire process awesome. The more I think about it the more I stand amazed by it. It is one thing to consider in a static sense three people working together all from different vantage points and routes and two of them end up at the same place and then accomplish this very delicate placement while being supported by the third. Add to that the size limitations of the "road" and the fact that they do not know the route when they begin---thus these operations can easily vary by an hour because of the route complexity and degree of difficulty in getting to the destination.

    Now, add the other reality--this is not a static work place They have to do all of this inside a target that is constantly moving while they are immersed in a liquid with very limited light transmittance---all while the main players may as well be 1000 miles away. Someone has to hold the camera and the flashlight so that they can do this very delicate dance placing this device perfectly

    Then--add to that---the bodies involvement in growing over this opening as if on queue.

    The world we live in is astounding for anyone interested in science

    Below is a picture that shows the device:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by Dave Grubb; 03-15-2019 at 11:25 AM.
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty” ---Sir Winston Churchill

    "Political extremism involves two prime ingredients: an excessively simple diagnosis of the world's ills, and a conviction that there are identifiable villains back of it all." ---John W. Gardner

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