Sunday, August 15, 2010

Heart Surgery

On August 6 I went into the local hospital for a heart stress test. It took from 9:30 AM until 2:15 PM. Much of that time was waiting between tests for the chemicals to clear out of my system before new pictures could be taken.

After the tests were completed, LaRue and I took off for a trip to Provo from the weekend to do some shopping. When we returned Sunday evening I saw that my doctor had called on Saturday. So I called him back and he told me the stress test came up abnormal. He said he would contact a cardiologist in Salt Lake Monday morning and arrange for me to get an angiogram. If you not familiar with the angiogram procedure, it's basically where they run a catheter into the femoral artery in your groin and up to the heart. Using a special dye they can see the actualy blood flow into and around the heart.
When the cardiologist's office called me Monday afternoon we scheduled the procedure for Thursday morning at Salt Lake Regional Hospital.

Wednesday after work LaRue and I headed to Provo to spend the night there so we wouldn't have such a long drive to Salt Lake Thursday monring.
We got to the hospital at 10:30. For the next hour they did paperwork and got me prepped - IV, hospital gown, etc. And we waited. And we waited. And we waited. It was almost 2:00 PM before they wheeled me into the operating room. That was because the doctor got delayed doing a pacemaker on someone else.

The angiogram procedure was painless. They only had to numb up the area of the groin where the catheter was to be inserted. I don't remember being unconscious, but I was for a while when they got the images and determined what was wrong. I had some blockage to a main artery that feeds the heart. The doctor inserted a balloon device through the catheter to open up the artery and then put a stent in place to keep the artery open.

In all I was in the operating room just over an hour. Because of the nature of the procedure I had to spend the night in ICU.
Because it was ICU LaRue was not allowed to stay with me. She went to Provo with Gary and Liz to spend the night.

We're back home now for a couple of days rest. Then back to work Tuesday.

Now for some pictures:

Here's the view of the hospital as we pulled into the entrance:

Here's the plaque at the entrance:

It turns out that Salt Lake Regional Hospital used to be Holy Cross Hospital. The only part of the Holy Cross Hospital that remains is the chapel:

Here's me after surgery:

Ready to home Friday morning. Liz brought LaRue up from Provo.