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#346188 - 04/26/11 12:35 PM Thankful and sharing
Ray3 Offline

Registered: 02/02/04
Posts: 2854
Loc: Rochester, NY
I started having some noticeable, but not severe chest pains 4-5 weeks ago and decided to see what was up. Started the medical process and the pains also started to ramp up.

Long story short, but imagine my surprise when the quest ended up with a stent being placed in my main heart artery last Tuesday morning to alleviate a 95% blockage.

If you gotta have this experience, I was lucky to be able to do it perfectly. Notice the pain, check it out, find the problem, fix it and no heart attack, damage or major surgery. No other blockages (they looked around in there) and a good positive prognosis. And BTW - I have more energy and feel terrific.

I wanted to share this for others to think about, but also because I had a great friend make this all easier for me. It's also a bit of a catharsis for me. That friend's input would be beneficial for others who may face this same issue, So here it is.

On a Thursday afternoon at 4:30, following a stress test, a doc I never met showed up with a model of a heart, pointed to the 3 major arteries, pointed at on and said - "You have a blockage here that needs to be fixed". My immediate response was "Ummm, whaaat", followed by terror and confusion. I was NOT doing my clearest thinking just then.

His response was, "Really, this needs to be done. Simple placement of a stent should fix it. How about tomorrow morning"? I said full stop - need to deal with this mentally and talk to my doc. Scheduled it for the following Tuesday morning (a week ago today).

Talked to my doc who explained this cardio pulmonary group was excellent and we should move forward without concern. Of course, concern is all I had. This was my freaking HEART for God's sake!

Then my friend (who found out what was going on) called. Over the next 5 minutes, he explained 1) he had 3 stents that these guys put in 3 yrs earlier, 2) it is an incredibly non-invasive procedure, 3) they give you some happy juice to relax you and 4) the ONLY minor discomfort is the entry point where they insert the catheter in the groin (not close to your package BTW) because of the size of the opening and the minor pain is after the procedure - not during it. He said, except for the entry wound, it was essentially like having a colonoscopy. WAAAYYYY better than bypass surgery. He went on to tell me that the entry wound hurts a little for a couple of days, but you almost instantly feel better and have more energy.

His phone call was a gift and settled me right down. Folks need to know this simple information to remove fear/dread from the equation.

That's the net of it. It is simple, easy and non-invasive. The entry wound pain is just annoying, kind of like a paper cut with a bit of an attitude. I share this so that you have something to calm you down if you are suddenly faced with this choice. It's simple and it works and MUCH better than the alternatives of heart attack, surgery or a dirt blanket. If you even THINK there is something going on - get proactive and get a stress test. Huge dividends from that investment.

I DID have a serious episode during the procedure, but it is a very limited thing. While I was on the table and enjoying the happy juice, my heart rate spiked in a manner that indicated a sudden surge of terror. Since I was conscious on the table, the doc stopped and asked if I was experiencing discomfort. I apologized and told him I had experienced a flash of memory of chesserooo dancing on Ian's deck after he had consumed 5 liters of white lightning, but I was able to fight the image off and everything was able to move forward. grin

Anyhow, I have a stent and I'm kind of anxious to take my new energy level out and start to do some exercising again. I hope this info is helpful to someone. If it is, pay it forward.

#346190 - 04/26/11 12:54 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: Ray3]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16437
Loc: Ben Lomond, California
Fantastic news, Ray! Glad to hear from you and that you're in such high spirits. Bullet? Dodged. Now, how about coming down for a visit to do some pint curls in Virginia?
I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

#346192 - 04/26/11 01:03 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: pmbuko]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 18044
Loc: NoVA
Very glad to hear that you're doing well.
I am the Doctor, and THIS... is my SPOON!

#346194 - 04/26/11 01:09 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: Ken.C]
RickF Offline

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
I'm glad to hear that you nipped the problem in the bud before it turned into a major issue for you Ray and I'm also glad to hear that everything went well for you. Thanks for sharing!
Our Room


#346196 - 04/26/11 01:20 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: RickF]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 11445
Loc: Central NH
Awesome news, Ray!

And thanks for sharing a story that might help someone else, though nowhere in there did you state "Sell the Wife!"
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

#346197 - 04/26/11 01:20 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: RickF]
davidsch Offline

Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 678
Loc: Houston, Texas
Thanks for sharing and here's to many more good years!

#346204 - 04/26/11 02:16 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: Ray3]
Adrian Offline

Registered: 12/27/08
Posts: 6926
Loc: It's all about the location.
That's great news, Ray, and thanks for sharing. I have wondered where you've been lately.
Half of communication is listening. You can't listen with your mouth.

#346212 - 04/26/11 03:25 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: Adrian]
tomtuttle Offline

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8488
Loc: Tacoma
Wait, I'm confused. What kind of remote was it?

I'm so grateful for your health, and for your story.

I'll bet you had to scrape Mrs. Ray off the ceiling. Enough about you, how did this affect HER?

I think I'll just sit here and reflect a while, now.

Cheers, my friend.
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

#346214 - 04/26/11 03:28 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: tomtuttle]
medic8r Offline

Registered: 02/05/06
Posts: 6471
Loc: Fredericksburg, Virginia
I raise my drink, and its tiny umbrella, in your honor.
Bears, beets, Battlestar Galactica.

#346215 - 04/26/11 03:38 PM Re: Thankful and sharing [Re: medic8r]
cgolf Offline

Registered: 03/14/05
Posts: 340
Loc: Cypress, Texas
Very good news. We men seem to avoid some of the preventive measures that are available to us. I have had an annual physical for the past 20 years or so and will continue. Had a stress test and some other heart tests 2 years ago (all good results) and this year is the ole colonoscopy...... smile

Glad you're doing well....

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