Dying Man’s Daily Journal – a little nervous


Well Tuesday is the big day. I have long known that one of the life lessons I need to learn is patience. I hate waiting, let’s just go and do it, get it all over with.

i appreciate that I am very lucky the cardiac unit at St. Boniface General Hospital is top notch, on the cutting edge of care, treatment and new procedures . At 6:00am on Tuesday I will be putting myself in their hands.
The Pre-Op was informative as the procedure is different than what I had been thinking. I am sure the misunderstanding is all on my part. Take a “memory guy” fill him with some sort of relaxing “happy juice” medication and who knows what the result will be and that is all fine.
Now this is how I understand it (keep that in mind).
I have had by pass surgery in the past. At that time it was open heart surgery. Your chest is cut open to allow access to the heart. The heart is stopped temporarily. A new piece of vein is sewn in to the blocked artery first on one side of the blockage. It is then run along past the blockage and then reattached to that artery on the other side of the blockage. Really it is putting in a little detour for the blood to flow around and past. Not sure how well I explained that.
By passing a blockage is the very same procedure I will be having. I am so very blessed, lucky and all that. Having the by pass done no longer requires the open heart surgery.
Again, I am not a doctor and what I am describing is my understanding.
It is being treated in a very similar manner to a simple angio-plasti.
A wire will be run either through my wrist or groin area. It will be threaded up all the way into the heart to the point the blockage begins. Now comes the tricky and I suppose risky part.
The doctor is standing beside, operating one end of the wire extending up into your heart, sort of like remote control. What I did not know is the walls of an artery contain 3 layers. What the doctor is going to do is make a small slit in the side of the artery wall, only through the first layer of the wall. He will then insert the wire into the wall of the artery. Staying between the walls of the artery. He will extend the instrument down the artery to a point past the blockage. At that point he will pop back out of the wall of the artery into the artery itself.
At that point there is a clear passage way past the blockage and a stent will be put in place to keep the passage way open.
The hands and skill of a surgeon are definitely needed for some thing this delicate. How amazing is that, if all goes well and IT WILL I will actually be home the next day. I will have essentially had the equivalent of open heart by pass surgery without having to have my chest cracked open.
It is the cutting into the artery part that has me a little nervous.
There as been some interest shown in sending me get well cards. Checking with the hospital I have found there is a way that can be done. The hospital actually has a site to which well wishes can be sent via email. I understand the emails are printed out on a card and delivered to the patient. I am not sure where I will exactly be other than in the cardiac unit. Should anyone be interested go online to the home page for St. Boniface General Hospital. Close to the top of the page there is a contact us tab. Hit that tab, scroll down to WELL WISHES. Their records will be showing me as William Howdle.Hearing from friends is always nice

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7 Responses to Dying Man’s Daily Journal – a little nervous

  1. NSC says:

    Sending you strength, patience,that odd sort of energy that hospitalization requires,lots of luck, and lots of prayer!

  2. souldipper says:

    So amazing, Bill. May you find courage you didn’t know you had! You’ve certainly got the right attitude! <3

  3. Betty says:

    It is amazing how surgical techniques have advanced. The St. B. definitely has an outstaning cardiac unit. It is wonderful there is a procedure just right for you. All the best on Tuesday, Bill. Sending you calming thoughts and wishing only the best outcome.

  4. hilarymb says:

    Hi Bill .. the procedure sounds incredible – but I’m so pleased it can be done .. very very good luck for Tuesday .. I’ll be thinking of you .. with thoughts to you and Vi and the family – Hilary

  5. rangewriter says:

    Wow. That is a fascinating description of the procedure. Well, easy for ME to say since it;s not on MY artery! I am absolutely dumb founded by this business of running a little remote control up a through the groin (or wherever) and working in these teeny, tiny areas.

    I will be on the road and probably out of Internet range on Tuesday. But I’ll be thinking of you, Bill.

  6. Mary says:

    BILL, they did the procedure on the Doctors show..very interesting and the patient said there was very little discomfort. Again, better that Open heart surgery. I know everything will be just fine, you are in the best skilled hands. hang in there. Talk again soon. Mary

  7. Mel says:

    (((((( Bill )))))))) Steady hands and a focused surgeon–oh, the marvels of the medical world. I’m amazed–and I’m so glad it’s not involving opening the chest wall. That’s such a traumatic experience for the patient.
    I have to believe–it’s what I’m made of, I guess. G-d’s done an amazing job of taking care of you. And I thank Him hugely for your presence in all of our lives. It’s mattered hugely.
    And I’m hopeful it’ll be an uneventful process, making that slit in the layers (wow….STEADY hands….). Most of all, I’m hoping that G-d puts His arm around Vi–she’s the one who’ll be awake and waiting. I know she’ll have support–and we’ll be praying for her as well. Never hurts to know G-d’s gotcha covered, yaknow? And I’m sending my better angel–cuz that’s what they’re for, yaknow?

    (((((((((((( Bill ))))))))))))))))
    Tough, this wait before the surgery. I know you’re spending it wisely, loving like crazy and finding reasons to smile and laugh. Just know that we’re all praying for you and Vi–and that there’s a whole lotta love in those prayers and thoughts we’re sending your way.
    You’re loved hugely, Bill.
    (((((((((((( Bill )))))))))))))))))

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