Ascending aorta anuerysms

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Just been diagnosed with a 4.8 centimeter anuerysm . Cardiologist wants me yoneait 6 months and have another cat scan to see if it's bigger. I feel like I have a ticking time bomb and want a second opinion. I'm a 64 year old female and thought I was in great health. This is devastating to me. Anyone else had any experience with this?

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  • Posted

    Hi. I am 36 and was recently diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm (I also have a bi-cuspid aortic valve that I was born with). Feeling like you are a ticking time bomb pretty much sums up how I have been feeling too. Like you, my next check-up is in six months. There are some great people here who are very supportive and helpful. Hang in there and know you are not alone.
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  • Posted

    The answer to your question unfortunately is yes! It seems that most people are caught of guard. No symptoms most of the time. Usually they are found during routine testing or test looking for something else. Mine was found in 2007, I had surgery in 2016. At first I was terrified then, I got use to the idea and decided to educate myself about it and live. I was aware of it everyday but I chose not to let it get me down. The real fear came April 2016 when I was told it was growing surgery was eminent! I just celebrated a year May 20th!! It has been challenging and painful but I've progressed a lot. I'm thankful it was found and monitored for 9yrs. I now realize that it could have been a lot worst.

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  • Posted

    Be grateful, don't lift heavy things, monitor your blood pressure.

    I wasn't lucky enough to know about mine ahead of time, the planned surgery is so much gentler than the emergency procedure.

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  • Posted

    Hi Gloria, I was diagnosed with a TAA (thoracic aortic aneurysm) approximate four years ago, received a second opinion where I was told they couldn't find it, then had some breathing issues that made me go back to my original cardiologist who confirmed the TAA exists.

    I have been an active bodybuilder and powerlifter for half my life, mostly in my 20s. I was also active in taekwondo during my teen years and in my early 30s. Throughout my 40s, I got married, had three children, establishd myself in my career and put on some weight which I have been working on losing over the years.

    I don't know when the TAA started and what caused it, however now I am very much in touch with my condition and have been going through bouts of being overly concerned, depressed and anxious, versus accepting it, having a positive attitude and living my life.

    I have been scuba diving for the last 3 1/2 years of the 4 years I have been diagnosed with the TAA and I'm not about to stop. I spoke with my cardiologist about this, so far he has given me instructions not to weight lift anymore and said I can continue cardiovascular exercise as long as it's not too intense. Scuba diving is a relaxing hobby, the worst part of it for my TAA is having to move off the boat and climb back on with my full gear which is an additional 70 pounds on my back. There are workarounds to this and he is okay with it. I am going away in 1 1/2 weeks to Cozumel for diving, and plan to fully enjoy it while taking precautions. Of course I am nervous, I am more scared of leaving my mother, wife and my children than I am of my own mortality, however I refuse to let this defeat me.

    Education is key. I've received a lot of support from members on this site over the last few weeks, shared our stories and feelings, and supported each other. I am working on cleaning up my diet, doing more brisk walking and losing this extra weight once and for all. No more weight training, at least nothing heavy but not touching weights since the last 2 months. I was never a true smoker, over the last 4 years I smoked a cigar once every 2 to 6 months at random. No more.

    Educate yourself, ask questions and reach out. You will get a lot of information and support on this site.

    Eric

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    • Posted

      Eric,

      My name is also Eric and I am a certified scuba instructor with a TAA at 5 CM. I have been lifing weights and riding road and mountain bikes for a large part of my adult life and still doing those things but very lightly on the weights. Your right education is the key. Learning not to overexcert is of utmost importance. I have decided that since my TAA is at 5 that I am going to go forward with the "David Procedure" to remove and fix the aneurysm in August. The David Procudure spares the replacement of the valve. I could wait till 5.5 to have it done but there are more chances that they would have to replace my valve.  

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    • Posted

      Hi Eric,

      Very glad a fellow diver replied (although I am also grateful for ALL replies, diver or non-diver - I am very happy to get the support I've been needing on this board, thanks to my wife for introducing me to this site)

      I am leaving a week from today to Cozumel. I've never been there, heard the diving is superb and crystal clear waters. We will be statying at Scuba Club Cozumel, I plan to tell the boat crew I need to put my gear on either in the water or seated at the platform, ready to simply jump in, rather than walk with my gear on, on the boat. Also, to take off my gear in the water and hand to them. I'm sure they will be willing to work this with me and plan to take extra care of them.

      My concern is the shore diving. From what it looks like, you put on your gear at or near the lockers, then walk with it on to the pool area and walk in. I'm used to heavy weight lifting but have stopped cold turkey since end of April. Full gear is what, an additional 70 or so pounds? I'm concerned walking with this gear on and aggravating my TAA (currently 4.4cm). Although I've been diving the last 3 1/2 of the 4 years I've been diagnosed with TAA, thank God it hasn't grown in size. However I do not want to take any more chances. I called Scuba Club, they said they can lend me a cart to wheel my stuff to the pool, then put on my gear and walk in. That will help. Final concern is any strong up or down currents and fighting them (I know swim perpendicular towards the wall).

      What is the David Procedure? And why don't cardiologists just get these aneurysms fixed now instead of waiting until 5/5.5cm?

      I'm sure you've been to Dutch Springs in PA or heard of it. Same thing, I'm going to buy a cart and wheel my stuff to/from the docks. Going to go for my dry suit cert after I get back from Coz.

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  • Posted

    Yes they were doing mri on back for disc work and they found a 3.2 so I am going through the same thing as you. Don't google...lol...it will scare you to death. Thank God that they found it. People die and never know they had one. We are warned and now we can keep getting it checked. I believe they don't even operate unitl it is about 5.5. The thing about you and I are that we don't know how long we have had it. lol...Good luck....

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  • Posted

    Hi Gloria, my name is Julia and at 54 I found my asending aortic aneurysm during an mri. I had pain between my shoulder blades as a symptom. It was 6.5 and I was told that surgery was eminent. I had surgery two months later, had to coordinate doctors and lots of tests. I just want to tell you what my experience was. I had awesome thoracic and artery surgeons and a great heart center. The surgery was 6 hours, 8 days in hospital, and 3mons off work. Not to mention getting off pain meds. It's been over two years and still have pain. I'm on my feet all day at work and it makes it worse, I will never be the same. But on the other hand I had no choice and I'm so glad I'm alive and thankful that the surgery was a success. So get all rhe education you can and ask the doctors everything!

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