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Thread: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery

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Posts: 2
Registered: 5/23/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: May 23, 2006 11:20 AM   in response to: JanieKincaid in response to: JanieKincaid
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Janie-you may want to update your knowledge concerning the longevity of pig valves. Suggest you consider the results of an ongoing study by the Cleveland Clinic. Hope you are not offended by this suggestion However,recent information may surprise you and change your opinion of 8-10 years longevity. Again, sure hope this message does not offend you in any way. Since you are interested in helping people,I thought perhaps you would be interested in current information.


Posts: 2
Registered: 5/23/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: May 29, 2006 11:55 AM   in response to: digitale02 in response to: digitale02
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If you have not yet had surgery.you may want to consider minimally invasive surgery.Web search will perhaps find a facility in your area that provides this alternative. Mine was done at Duke.Cleveland Clinic also does them a does other facilities.


Posts: 1
Registered: 6/10/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jun 10, 2006 8:11 AM   in response to: Memers59 in response to: Memers59
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Hi, I'm new to this site. On 12/23/04 I had three valves replaced. My mitral and aortic valves are St jude mechanical and my tricuspid valve is bovine. I also have a very loud ticking. I only hear it if I wake up and try to go back to sleep. I also take coumadin. I was just wondering if anyone has a trick to remember to take it. I have heard that you should take it at night in case your inr is off and meds have to be adjusted. thanks


Posts: 1
Registered: 6/11/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery & PTS
Posted: Jun 11, 2006 11:17 PM   in response to: SpartanCaver in response to: SpartanCaver
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> Post tramatic stress syndrome. How's that for a
> possible side effect of aortic valve replacement?
> I don't remember that being in the possible side
> effects unless it was generaly under neurological
> side effects. which i had thrown off blood clots that
> lodge in the brain. can't speak as well as before and
> have poor short term memory. and an intense craving
> for minute maid lemonade weird huh. never touched the
> stuff, can't get now it's the number one choice at
> the convienice store.
> Had aortic replaced 05-11 went back in to drain
> cardic effusion 8 days later. effusion is where that
> membrane surrounding the heart fills up with 1 liter
> of fluid. Nearly died from life saving surgery.
> during recovery unbeliveable nightmares
> Post tramatic stress
> Let's see how could i have that?
> lost job just before surgery
> living on home equity loan for past year and am out
> of money
> can't hold a simple job assembling charcoal grills
> for the big orange depot
> was chief engineer for major chairy orginzation and
> can't assemble two grills in a row without
> instructions, hands shake like a rattlesnake's tail
> when i try to hurry
> can't leave the house for unrealized fear of
> something
> can't build a simple wooden box even though i had a
> life long construction career
> i know i am now too damn old to get a job. had that
> one told to me by two reliable sources, first one was
> job counselor for the state being honest, second by
> potential employer. went to eeoc and was told i was
> indeed to old.
> got more meds and thought the pig valve would end the
> need for meds over the mechnical. should have went
> with the hardware, would have been less drugs.
> PTS???
> I don't know I can't decide, in fact i can't make any
> decisions right now.
> is it PTS???
> You tell me
> Just a warning before your next heart surgery
> Don't let it frighten you.
> Do read as much real information about your surgery
> and implant devise from real medical websites like
> this one not the doc on the web.com. it's so
> polyannia i want it baned like porn sites.
> make a list to take to the surgeon
> hold to the list and don't let him / her out the door
> without all being answered
> see the gas passer and ask him a thing or two.
> you can be somewhat in control of your surgery not
> much but a little it helps
> been there done that will do it again in 2020
> by then they will have a pill that will grow me a new
> one if the current administration will pay for stem
> cell research. OPPS i have gone to preaching now.
> inform yourself the surgeon will only pass you fifth
> grade reading brochures on how easy a thing valve
> replacement is.
> be braced for the possibility it could go off the
> trail a bit.
> 80% go well and no problems
> that leaves 20% that go wrong but usualy these are
> ones with other conditions like life long smoker, or
> life long non-stop eater.
> well i have ranted long enough but it feels a bit
> better
> is there anyone out there listening?
> keep clear
> spartan caver


Posts: 1
Registered: 6/19/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jun 19, 2006 6:41 AM   in response to: Rose46 in response to: Rose46
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My mother needs open heart surgery for double valve replacement but hasn't had it yet. She was on a low dose of Toprol XL recently and had exactly the same symptoms - sleeping all the time, loss of appetite, mental confusion. They took her off this drug and she vastly improved after 2-3 days. Was the recuperation period very hard? She is 76 with diabetes and not in the best of health, so I'm worried about her having the surgery.
Thanks for any info you can give me.


Posts: 2
Registered: 6/19/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jun 19, 2006 3:29 PM   in response to: Mpape in response to: Mpape
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Hi, my name is Lisa and I am 30. I was born with pulmonary stenosis. When I was five they repaired my own pulmonary valve and did a baloon dilation of my artery. I haad a child 3 yrs ago in doing so I damaged my heart. In 2/05 they replaced my pulmonary valve with a pig valve. The pig valve had developed scar tissue and they want to replace it again. Just wondering abouth the type valve you received. Any info you could give me I would appreciate it.
Lisa Tillett


Posts: 7
Registered: 5/11/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jun 20, 2006 12:06 AM   in response to: LisaT30 in response to: LisaT30
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Hi Lisa:

Because of your age, st jude valves are really the choice. I wanted pig valves but there lifespan run about 10 to 15 years. St Jude valves can be a real drag and can be somewhat annoying, but I guess it beats getting open heart every 10 yrs to replace them. Also, you will need to take coumadin the rest of your life. Also, pig valves are susceptible to infection as well as are own valves. I was 44 when I had my valves replaced. I had the mitral, aortic, and tricuspid valve repaired. Good luck with your surgery. There maybe other alternatives available today that you may want to discuss with your Cardiologist.


Posts: 2
Registered: 6/22/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery & PTS
Posted: Jun 22, 2006 3:11 PM   in response to: latendressel in response to: latendressel
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I have heard that the stress of waking up on life support freaks people out the most. I had my aortic valve replaced 8-4-04 and I have had vistibular complications. Vertigo - I had never experienced it b4 the surgery. So I can relate to alot of what you are saying. I think I am stronger in alot of ways, but I seem to spin alot in my head. I was in a coma for 2 days after the surgery and did not wake up on life support. I am still pretty goofy sometime, I had a bunch of personal trama b4 the surgery, and after. But the biggest trama is dealing with docs that think that you are ok when you know in your soul you are not.


Posts: 1
Registered: 6/22/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jun 22, 2006 3:36 PM   in response to: Loulou19 in response to: Loulou19
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Hi, Im 20 years old and my boyfriend is 22...he had endocarditis for almost all of last year and I thought everything was fine. He then had to get valve replacement because the disease affected them so much. Well now its about 6 months later and hes blacking out and loosing his breath and the doctors told him he has to get another replacement surgery for hes most likely to die within a few months. I am not taking this very well at all. Hes so young and were both scared. If their is anything anyone can tell me about this surgery or getting it twice or recovery, just anything would be so helpful. thanks


Posts: 2
Registered: 6/29/06
Recovery Time After Surgery?
Posted: Jun 29, 2006 11:19 AM   in response to: Loulou19 in response to: Loulou19
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My dad is having his valve replaced next week, and is 75. I need to know about his recovery time...how long should I expect him to be in the hospital and how long will he need care? I live far from him, and am thinking about hiring a nurse if family and friends can't do the job and I will obviously be home every weekend. Do you recommend that he has around the clock professional care once he gets home and for how long will he need it? I could really use some advice from somebody who had their vavle replaced or took care of someone afterwards...I would like to know what to expect and what I can do to best care for him. And how serious is this surgery? Should I be freaking out more than I already am? Thank you

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Posts: 104
From: New Jersey
Registered: 2/5/06
Re: Recovery Time After Surgery?
Posted: Jun 30, 2006 10:29 AM   in response to: waters in response to: waters
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I'm surprised that the doctors haven't already gone through this with you! When I had my valve replaced 6 yrs ago (at age 31), I was in the hospital for about 6 days (the final benchmark was when I was able to "do" a flight of stairs)...I would say for about 3-4 wks after that I was pretty limited at home (restricted to a flight of stairs no more than once a day - down/up)...it was a good 2 months until I started to do more. Fortunately, wy wife's job was very flexible and nearby so she was able to be around most of the day and my parents stayed with us for the first month to help as well!


Posts: 1
Registered: 7/3/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jul 3, 2006 1:29 PM   in response to: Loulou19 in response to: Loulou19
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I had a congentially defective (bicuspid) aortic valve replaced last week, at age 64, plus a bypass. I wish I had found this site before I did so, as I felt like the Lone Ranger. I live on a rustic beach on the Western Coast of Mexico... the closest cardiolgist is hours away. But luckily I found a good team in Queretaro, the center of the country, about 8 hours drive from home. I am a US expat and have lived here for over 40 years, so have no US insurance nor health contacts.
I'd sure like any recommendations on diet and llifestyle changes. It seems that my acenocumenol (anticoagulant) is just about perfectly adjusted and I can go back to my paradise next week. But what should I be afraid of, besides green leafy vegetables? What about insect bites? I'd sure appreciate any help.
Thank you. Gary


Posts: 1
Registered: 7/22/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Jul 22, 2006 10:03 PM   in response to: sundar in response to: sundar
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Hi Phylis,

I just underwent mitral valve replacement with the St Jude valve this is my second operation 25 years ago they repaired the mitral valve. I had to undergo surgery again now because the valve had completely deteriorated.

I hear clicking noises do you? will the noises go away? Looking forward to hearing back from you.

Katherine in Toronto


Posts: 1
Registered: 8/22/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Aug 22, 2006 4:41 PM   in response to: lizb in response to: lizb
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To Lizb, (or anyone else that might be able to shed some light on this:)

My father is currently undergoing radiation and chemo therapy for melanoma tumors in his brain and lungs. His situation is very unique in that he has a fairly critical heart condition as well. In 1975 he had a mechanincal valve inserted for the aortic valve and in 1984 a St Jude valve inserted for the mitral valve. He has been on coumadin for 30+ years, however last Monday they took him completely off coumidin because of the increased risk of the tumors in the brain bleeding. We are on day 8 now being off coumadin and from what the Dr's have told us is that there is no real studies out there on how long people with artificial valves can live without clotting or mechanical failure of the valves due to the increased density of the blood. I am brand new to this forum and have been looking for any cases that relate to my father. I ran across a posting from you in whih you said,
"I have a mechanical valve (St. Jude's) in my left mitral valve. I too am on coumadin and was on Toporal for years. I was recently taken off because I was ungoing allergy testing and I doing fine without it."
and wanted to know how long you were off coumadin and how you felt? Are you still have off it?

Hope you are doing well and would appreciate a reply when you have a minute.

Thank you in advance,



Posts: 1
Registered: 8/26/06
Re: Heart Valve Replacement Surgery
Posted: Aug 26, 2006 12:44 AM   in response to: joek in response to: joek
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Hi Joe,
We seem to be in the same boat in a way......had Hodgkins at 16, did the radiation and now needing aortic and mitral valve replaced at age 41(heart is working at about 50%)........problem is, I have COPD with severe scarring around right lung and heart due to the radiation burning them all those years ago. An excellent cardio/thorasic surgeon here in Savannah GA says he won't do the surgery (he has done 2 surgeries on my R lung) cause he's afraid I will have "trouble coming off the heart-lung machine" and might need a transplant!!
I had Thyroid cancer 3 years ago thanks to my radiation also and many other numerous health problems over the years and now this........Your post was a few months ago and I'm curious how you're doing and would appreciate any help/information that anyone can give me cause honestly I've fought cancer 2 times in my life and wasn't nearly as scared as I am now!!
I can't take a lot of the meds my cardiologist wants to give me because they lower my blood pressure to the point of making me faint when I'm just sitting around. They tell me not to get upset, not to worry, avoid stress and just relax.....how am I supposed to do that when they are telling me this kind of crap after all that I've already been through??
I'm an active duty soldiers wife and I've survived him being in Iraq 2 times already and he's due to go again in a few months......I spend a lot of time praying and wondering why me?? Depression is kicking my butt most days and I could sure use some encouragement from someone/anyone that has been through this stuff and came out on top........ Thank You all in advance for any advice you can give me!!
On the edge of insanity,

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