Elizabeth Browder

Strokes and Heart Surgery

It all started Wednesday morning with left arm numbness. I was taken to the ER by two coworkers. Within 10 minutes, I had a CT Scan and had a wwonderful drug called TPA,a clotbuster started.  Then…the talk started. We know why you have these. How can we fix it? Oh, dear reader, it is a story.

I have a hole in my heart. I did not take a deep enough breath when I was born. I guess when the doctor slapped my butt, I protested that child abuse by holding my breath. I have always been like that. In some very special people, this hole can form clots that go anywhere in the body. And mine wants  the brain. I must be very special. So, a heart durepairs in and says we need to fix it. (who is this “we”?)

Ok, I know they have a nice little procedure where they go up the groin to fix it… takes FDA approval…and being the government, it takes forever to get approval and no one want that long…so I get the fun kind of repair…open heart surgery.

Yeah! But, first, I have to meet the surgeon. Who decIdes to come see me at 1130 at night. Because that is more fun to wake someone up from a sound sleep to tell them that you want to cut their chest open. After processing that info,he says Byw see you later. The next morning, the  great debate starts. When to do the surgery? But first..” we don’t do heart surgery  without doing a heart cath first.” Why? Because it is so much fun!! I mean, who would not want a catheter snaked up to their heart while you are awake? And  it is so fun to lay on your back for two hours. Oh, and since they will be in there, we will bypass a few arteries. Fun!!

That is where I am now. Waiting on surgery. It will be a few days before I can update everyone. I am terrified, but I have faith in  G-d

About the Author
Elizabeth is a nurse by profession, and a parent of a dog who thinks she is human. She likes lots of things. She may write about them.