I am a 35 year old male in the Denver area. On October 22nd I suffered a stroke. While in good overall health, the only explananition doctor's were able to come up with for my stroke was a PFO identified during tests.
As a result, I joined the RESPECT study through the South Denver Cardiology Offices under Dr Lee MacDonald's care. Essentially half of those enrolled would be selected to have the closure device and half would simply take medications (ie aspirin). The hypothesis of the study is that closing a PFO will siginificantly reduce/stop continued strokes. I highly recomend anyone who has suffered a stroke with a PFO to join this study.
Well last Monday on December 12th I had my PFO closed at Swedish Medical Center. I was nervous and scared to have the surgery. Reading everyone's stories on here helped so much. It was nice to see that I wasn't alone in this fight. It is hard to believe that so many young people (even those younger than I) are battling strokes. There are some tough stories to read on here...however for the most part everyone seems to have had great success stories when speaking of a PFO closure.
I was in the hospital overnight for observation...never felt any pain and went home the next day. I have resumed my workout routine (with the exception of weights) consisting of cardio - running, biking, etc. This was the best thing I could have done.
To everyone out there - if you have suffered a stroke and have a PFO I highly recommend you have this procedure. While I feel NO different since having the surgery, my family and I have peace of mind knowing the risk has been significantly reduced for having a future stroke.
Thank you for sharing and reading.
Last edited by shane0822; 12-19-2011 at 02:46 PM.
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to shane0822 For This Useful Post: Mulchie (01-11-2012), Positive Cynic (01-12-2012)
PFO stands for patent foramen ovale. It is actually a small opening with a flap in the septal wall that allows blood to flow between the right and left atrium of the heart before birth. After birth this flap should heal closed, preventing this flow. In about 25% of the population it doesn't close completely, and in some people this may allow unfiltered blood from the right atrium to pass to the left atrium and be circulated to the brain etc. After a stroke happens and no other cause can be found, closing an existing PFO may be done to eliminate the risk of another stroke. It's still a fairly new procedure, but the benefits make it strongly worth considering. Shane gave a great description of the procedure. I had it done a year ago after 2 small strokes and went home the same day. You don't feel any discomfort in the heart because there aren't any nerves. The procedure is done through the groin and is called a percutaneous procedure. The cardiologists apply a patch to the opening and the heart tissue eventually heals over it. I'm no doctor but I hope this explanation helps a bit. Good luck!
The Following User Says Thank You to kmarla For This Useful Post: K8S (01-11-2012)
You sound so good and positive. Im happy for you. It sounds like you made the right choice and your post will certainly help others here. It is great to be able to read success stories at a time when we are scared and our world is so uncertain. Your story certainly will help others.
Best of Luck and God Bless Mulchie