Monday, April 14, 2014

Endless Reading and Running a 5K

I endlessly read about heart disease.  The newest studies, the newest techniques and the advances that will hopefully give me a better quality of life down the line. 

Several times in my endless reading I have read that if you have 100% occlusion, there is no way to stent.  This would require them to crack your chest open and perform a coronary artery bypass graft.  I clearly remember my doc telling me that my LAD was completely blocked yet they stented the artery. The cardiac cath and the stents took a long time and I ended up with three of them. I remember him telling me that a lesser cardiac surgeon would not have been able to place the stents and would have done the CABG. At the time I was grateful to be alive and grateful not to have my chest cracked open.  They failed eight months after being placed and I had to have two more stents put inside the original three so they could reopen them--they were 70-80% blocked with scar tissue.

Sometimes when I read things as this I really question the judgement of this first doctor.  Not that I really want to have them crack my chest open, but perhaps it would have been better than continually wondering if and when my stents will fail again. Did his ego of not being a "lesser" surgeon cause him to try something that I now get to pay for?  I won't ever know.  I was in an emergency and I came out alive.  In the end, that is what matters.

Although I find things that make me question my care, I can tell you in the endless reading that I do I also find some pretty cool things.  Things like a tiny wireless pacemaker.  Things like stem cells showing promise in stroke recovery.  The research is awesome and I can't wait to read the next cool thing!  In the end even if I question my own care there are more cool things that outweigh this and keep me reading.

I have reached a huge milestone in my recovery since I wrote last.  I have actually started running.  Granted my running currently exists of 60 second time frames woven into my walk, but it counts!  I have to start somewhere:)  I was so psyched to have done this.  I have been terrified of running.  Mostly, I have been terrified my heart could not handle it.  Well, it can and that feels awesome!  I have been attending a women's training group at a local hospital leading up to the Mother's Day 5K.  My girls are walk/running it with me on Mother's Day morning. Yay for small steps!

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