lofwyr

Aortic Aneurysm, for real...ugh.

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So, my ECG did not, in fact, come back normal. I have sever dilation of the aortic root by my heart, an aortic anyeurism that appears to be 5cm. I have a referral with a thoracic surgeon soon--probably next week. I will have no choice but to have the surgery, but I am thankful.

It was caught by chance, really. My doctor just sent me for a ECG to do my five year check on my prolapsed mitral valve. That was insignificant, but he found the anyeurism now here I am, facing a very serious situation. I will likely have to have a valve replacement as well as an aortic graft.

I am less scared about this than all the imaginary stuff I have beat, but scared none-the-less.

I am grateful my doctor caught it. I am grateful I have the chance to do something about it, rather than suddenly drop dead in a year or two unexpectedly. I am grateful for you guys too, for letting me vent here, to a place where not many of us understand what it is like to be caught in a web of fear. 

And let me tell you, when you have something real to fight, for some reason it is less scary.

I will cross post this across NMP and AC. Thanks guys...

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It's less scary when you're facing a real issue because it's real. Anxiety creates the worst case scenario all in the mind, playing out the worst possible outcome. When you face a genuine issue, the body responds with positive anxiety - as it should - for survival. I'm glad you have answers and, although I wish that wasn't the case for you, I hope you are well soon. Let us know if we can help. You're in good hands, they'll take care of you. :)

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I have to echo what bin_tenn says, this is the difference between anxiety and actual medical issues.  The mind works very differently when faced with a genuine illness, it reverts to it's normal processes and must commend you, lofwyr, on your calmness, resilience and acceptance of this situation and i hope you make a speedy recovery :) 

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Ditto to what everyone else has said, and I'm keeping you in my thoughts and prayers!  All will be just fine!! :) 

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Apparently a particularly unfun surgery, but not super dangerous, well, not more dangerous than any major surgery.

Targeted google searches have led me in the right direction. I love survivor stories, and there are plenty of folks like me out there who are going through it and have already gone through it. It sucks, sure, but I am already learning that I think I can use this as a tool to put my anxiety into perspective. 

Thanks for the well-wishes!

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I understand, to an extent. I had an episode of afib (first and only) last August. While it's obviously not nearly as severe as your diagnosis, it is still scary. I was also in the depths of anxiety hell at the time. Still, I did not worry when I went through that - definitely not like I did when anxious about nothing. So yeah, you're not the only one. I think we all do much better when faced with real trouble. :)

Good luck and let us know how things go, if you don't mind. Will the surgery have you down for a while, while recovering?

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I am already learning that I think I can use this as a tool to put my anxiety into perspective

Absolutely this!! This sort of thing shows anxiety for what it really is.

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12 hours ago, lofwyr said:

Apparently a particularly unfun surgery, but not super dangerous, well, not more dangerous than any major surgery.

Targeted google searches have led me in the right direction. I love survivor stories, and there are plenty of folks like me out there who are going through it and have already gone through it. It sucks, sure, but I am already learning that I think I can use this as a tool to put my anxiety into perspective. 

Thanks for the well-wishes!

I'm so very sorry to hear you are going through this but I absolutely LOVE your attitude towards it! :) 

I'm a survivor of a few major surgeries myself, they came before the anxiety for me, for the most part but they definitely still motivate me forward. 

The very best of luck, I have great admiration and trust in surgeons I'm sure it will all go well and then you can recuperate and thrive. 

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Thanks guys. I won't say I am not scared, I am obviously scared witless. But it is also framed with the fact that it is a real problem, and many, many others have lived through worse than what I have.

I am in decent shape, decent BMI, good lung function, at least as far as I know, and a good heart, aside from the obvious. I am also surrounded by a loving family who will help see me through this. I have a lot to be scared about, but I have a lot to be thankful for to. I hope all here have good health, and bright futures. I hope we all find our paths out of the fear, and if I take nothing else from the coming ordeal, I hope I can at least keep anxiety where it belongs. 

If people are interested, I can post updates as this process goes forward, but I am also aware that sometime people in our position do not always want to hear these stories. I will check in though, along the way, just to say how it went. I was pleased to learn that the surgery I will have to have has less than a .27% mortality rate. I figure I have better odds of being in a fatal accident on the way TO the operation than I do in surgery. Knock on wood, though.

Thanks again for being here guys. I may come to you when the fears percolate, which I am sure they will.

 

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1 hour ago, lofwyr said:

Thanks guys. I won't say I am not scared, I am obviously scared witless. But it is also framed with the fact that it is a real problem, and many, many others have lived through worse than what I have.

I am in decent shape, decent BMI, good lung function, at least as far as I know, and a good heart, aside from the obvious. I am also surrounded by a loving family who will help see me through this. I have a lot to be scared about, but I have a lot to be thankful for to. I hope all here have good health, and bright futures. I hope we all find our paths out of the fear, and if I take nothing else from the coming ordeal, I hope I can at least keep anxiety where it belongs. 

If people are interested, I can post updates as this process goes forward, but I am also aware that sometime people in our position do not always want to hear these stories. I will check in though, along the way, just to say how it went. I was pleased to learn that the surgery I will have to have has less than a .27% mortality rate. I figure I have better odds of being in a fatal accident on the way TO the operation than I do in surgery. Knock on wood, though.

Thanks again for being here guys. I may come to you when the fears percolate, which I am sure they will.

 

That 0.27% probably accounts primarily for people who have other more serious health problems alongside needing the surgery, IMO. Just a guess, but that seems most likely to me. Either way, good luck. Please do let us know how things are going. I'm sure we'd all like to know you're still doing well throughout the process. :)

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Thanks guys. As an update, they are adding some scans to check the size. There is some debate based on the scans they have as to whether it is quite to the operable stage yet. They also want a better look at the valve, so I have a chest cat scan and tracheal ultrasound on the books. They are wanting more information prior to the surgical consult, which is good. My surgeon is world reknowned and has worked at the Mayo Clinic, so I will be in good hands. 

 I have joined some online support groups, and the people there are amazing. You don't feel alone because you aren't alone, like this group. I cannot stress enough, if something like this does happen, reach out and find others in your situation. 

God forbid, you have this as well, know it is far from a death sentence. It is a hard surgery, but it is safe as anything. Recovery can be fast, one story of a young marine who went through this procedure was in Afghanistan ten months later. 

I am looking for way to getting thorough it.

thanks for all the well wishes.

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Please keep us updated.

I'm going to reach out to you by PM because I'm going to be facing something similar (aortic valve replacement) in the future, too.

Keep a positive outlook.  ?

 

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