Heart valve replacement

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My Husband has recently been told he needs a heart valve replacement. He has been told his operation should be before the end of June. i would be grateful if anyone could give me an idea of recovery time and how long he will be in hospital i am really worried about him.

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    I had a tissue aortic valve fitted in June 2012 when I was 78. It really is nothing to get up tight about it is pretty routine surgery. The porter wheeling me down to the theatre said that I was the calmest patient he had ever had. I had researched it well before hand and had watched operations on Youtube.

    I came to wide awake and pain free in ICU with a nurse to myself. There was still some morphine in my drip. After that paracetemol was enough and after day two I was refusing it. The next day a nurse took me down to the bathroom for a wash and then to the main ward. My wife was surprised to see me sitting in a chair when she came to see me. The next day was the worst part when two physios walked me down the corridor and up two fights of stairs to get my circulation moving. I got a seat at the end of the corridor and on each landing but I was totally out of breath and sweating when I got back to the ward. I still had the drip to cart around plus in my case a container that was draining fluid that had accumulated in my lung.

    Some patients are out in six days but I was in for ten as well as the fluid in my lung I had developed atrial fibrillation and a cardioversion on day four had not settled it. About 35% get AF. Some revert back into sinus rhythm after a couple of day on their own. Others need drugs or a cardioversion, I was more obstinate as the first one did not work and I had to go back later as an out patient for another.

    Walking once you are home is quite hard and you have to go out twice a day for very short walks and gradually build up over the weeks. He will also go to cardio rehab classes. I found them rather a waste of time as by the time I went I was pretty much back to normal in two months. By September I was well over it and going to the races and out for five or six hours and traveling by bus and train

    Most people find sleeping a problem as your chest is uncomfortable unless you lie on your back. Car seat belts are also uncomfortable.

    With summer coming he is having it at a good time for getting out to help his recovery.

    Good luck with it and don't worry he will be fine. Post back on his recovery.

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    • Posted

      Most people sail through it without problems.

      The biggest problem unfortunately is cancellations due to theatre staff shortages. Two others were booked in along with me. One was told the next morning that they could not fit him in. Another when I was there was actually on the trolley to go to the theatre when he was told that they did not have a theatre sister and could not get one from an agency and was sent home. Then emrgencies often come in.

      It is a very big team in the theatre and all are specialists. I had an Amplatzer amululet implanted in my heart through a vein in my groin a couple of years ago. It is a simple procedure but there were eight in the team in the theatre.

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    • Posted


      My eye caught your last post where you stated that you had an amplatzer implanted in your heart. Did you have a PFO closed or was it for another issue?

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    • Posted

      It was not for a PFO. There are quite a few Amplatzer devices mine was the amulet

      fitted to prevent clots from passing through my left atrial appendage and so allow me to stop taking in my case Warfarin or NOACs. See below.

      As a stroke prevention device for patients with atrial fibrillation, the Amplatzer Amulet left atrial appendage (LAA) occluder is part of the industry-leading Amplatzer line of structural intervention occluders. The Amulet LAA Occluder is a part of Abbott’s broad structural heart portfolio.Percutaneous, catheter-based occlusion of the LAA—the therapy provided by the Amplatzer Amulet LAA Occluder—is an increasingly performed procedure aiming to reduce the risk of stroke in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. Current evidence suggests that transcatheter occlusion of the LAA reduces the risk of thromboembolic complications associated with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation.

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