Originally posted by classic: |
I had a heart attack in December of 2001 and I was told by the Doctors that my heart couldn't be repaired.
One of these Doctors were from the Cleveland Clinic. My arteries were so bad and blocked up to 90%.
The Doctors advised me that I couldn't have a by-pass operation. The only thing I could do was allow them to put a stent in the 90% blocked artery. My other two arteries were blocked 70 & 30%. So the stent was installed and the next problem occured in June of 2002.
Well in June the Doctors noticed the stent that was installed in December of 2001 already closed up 50%.
I was having pain in my left arm and shoulder in June.
This time they installed stents in the two remaining arteries and thats where I'm at today.
I've discussed this with other people and they told me some Doctor should be able to help me. They can't believe my heart can't be repaired. The persons I talked to said it sounds like your Doctor gave you a "Death Sentence".
Now in my present situation I don't have health ins. There is nothing I can do now but sit back and wait for something to happen to me. Knowing full well that I might not walk away from my next heart attack thats coming. I'm at a new job and want to tell people about my condition. I don't want people to feel sorry for me, but part of me wants to tell them so they'll know what I'm going through. Is it wrong for me to want to tell co workers or should I just keep it to myself?
I thought I would post my condition and see what other
people would do in my situation. It looks like a lot of people are viewing this post but choose not to comment. Some comment on me telling others at work but not on my condition.
[This message has been edited by classic (edited 08-26-2003).]
Alright, I'll comment on your condition since it is the past which I'm commenting upon.
First, you have coronary artery disease (CAD) and what damage was done to your heart muscle is a result from the myocardial infarction (MI) or heart attack. There is no "repairing" the heart after a heart attack, regardless of the patient's insurance.
Second, you mention the "Doctors advised me that I couldn't have a by-pass operation." I would be willing to bet that what they actually told you was that coronary bypass graft surgery was not warranted in your situation because of the occlusions and the coronary arteries involved. (Unless you have a lot other serious medical conditions which would make the risk of such a surgery extraordinarily dangerous and there is nothing in your post which would suggest this, if your situation merited that extraordinary measure, they would have done one.) But bypass should not be done as a first step with the vessel occlusion which you mention. It is a serious surgery and carries a host of risks and a higher mortality rate for females than for males! So with a 90 percent occlusion and I'm betting that occlusion is in the right coronary artery and 70 percent and 30 percent and I'm betting those were either in the anterior descending and/or the right coronary artery, not in the left coronary artery because the last time I checked the left coronary artery is not accessible by the catheter, the cardiologist did a balloon angioplasty (PTCA) and then put in the stents. This is a far cry from a death sentence and is , in fact, exactly what I would expect from a competent cardiologist. (Wall Street Journal did an article a few years back on a city who led the nation in unnecessary coronary artery bypass graft surgeries instead of doing PTCA).
It is not unusual for a vessel to re-occlude following a PTCA and this risk increases with stents. Stents, themselves, narrow the vessel and so cardiologist are reluctant to insert stents in tiny arteries are in vessels with little occlusion such as the 30 percent which you mentioned because it narrows the lumen of the vessel in itself.
Presuming that you are not obese and/or a smoker and that you are exercising, you should have many years of good health before you.
[Side bar: I had my first heart attack twenty years ago. I had "extensive vascular disease." At that time, there were no stents. The right coronary artery had 98 percent occlusion and the left descending had 70 percent. The cardiologist did a balloon angioplasty in both arteries. Three weeks later, he had to redo the right coronary artery because of re-occlusion. I started walking 3 miles a day every day. Two years later I was in Breckenridge, CO on the sloops, skiing from the time the lifts opened until the last lift went up at 4:00 p.m. o'clock and did so for three day.]