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  • Surgical Facility Decision

    [Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Howard Mirchin (---.proxy.aol.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 12:37

    I am currently trying to decide which facility to have a myectomy & maze procedure performed. I am 42 years old and have been diagnosed with IHSS since age 26 and my resting gradient is up to 90. I have been to the Cleveland Clinic to visit Dr. Lever whom he recommended Dr. Smedira as the surgeon and to Mt. Sinai in New York to visit Dr. Fuster and the surgeon Dr. Adams (previously from Brigham Womens in Boston). If anyone can provide me with any information on either facility and or doctors, it could assist me in my decision making. If anyone has traveled out of state (I live in New York and have two children age 4 & 7) for open heart surgery I would like to hear about your experience to.

    Thanks

    Howie

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lynn S. (---.dsl.dytnoh.ameritech.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 13:36

    Hi there,

    I had my myectomy done on August 29th this year at Cleveland Clinic with Dr. Lever as the cardiologist and Dr. Smedira as the surgeon. I cannot say enough tremendous things about both of them as well as Cleveland Clinic (which is rated the #1 Heart Center in America for the 8th consecutive year). I'm sure that Mt. Sinai is also an outstanding facility but with Cleveland's rankings it is definitely a facility and staff that knows heart surgery.

    Although I did not travel out of state to reach Cleveland Clinic, I am located 3.5-4 hours south of it. Traveling by car and taking our time coming home following surgery, my husband and I split the trip in half spending a night in a hotel on the way home. The clinic gives guidelines on traveling home both near/far as they are accustomed to long-distance travelers (including international). In fact, when I was there for my surgery we met a wonderful couple from Fairbanks, Alaska who had traveled there for open heart surgery.

    I too have a young child, a 2.5 year old. My husband and I had her stay with grandparents during our absence. I left a small, inexpensive 'surprise' for her to open each day while I was gone. In my case, I was comfortable talking with her on the phone when I felt up to it but I know not all children are receptive to that and it's sometimes better to not talk directly to them (avoiding upsetting them).

    All the best, you're going to feel so much better after the surgery!

    Lynn Stewart

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Howard Mirchin (---.proxy.aol.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 13:53

    Dear Lynn:

    How was your post-op experience at the Clinic? How do you feel 5 weeks after your surgery? Can you share your experience including the down-side during your recovery? Thanks again for you kind help and sharing your experience.

    Howie

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Jerry Salzman (---.indy.rr.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 15:56

    Howie,

    I will also echo Lynn's remarks. I was at Cleveland Clinic at the same time. My myectomy surgery with Dr. Smedira was August 27th. I am 6 hours away in Indianapolis. My experience at the Cleveland Clinic was excellent. I am starting to feel normal again, and have just begun driving. It is still too early to determine what my final results will be as I still get tired easily. Hope this helps.

    Jerry

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Jerry Salzman (---.indy.rr.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 15:57

    P.S. Hi Lynn.

    Jerry

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 16:52

    I knew I could count on the CMC to pull the newbies through!

    Thanks guys... Howard I told you these guys were great!

    Lisa

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Rhonda (---.sc.charter.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 17:03

    The Cleveland Clinic was great. We were there for a myectomy on the 17th of September. They were all very nice and so efficient and helpful. My husband is doing well, by the way!

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Rhonda (---.sc.charter.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 17:05

    Oh yeah, we have a 7year old and a 3 year old. We are in South Carolina- grandmother came and stayed with them. We drove up by car, but husband flew back on a straight through flight-took only about 1 hour and 20 minutes.

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: john jordan (---.public.lawson.webtv.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 19:07

    hi howard, i had a myectomy and two bypasses on the 15th of july. i had dr. asher and dr. smedira. cleveland clinic was great. the drs. helped me to understand the operation and i did not have to have two valves replaced as i was told in pitts. pa. im only three hours to cleveland. my cardiolgist wanted me to go to mayo in minn. but i found out about cleveland and all were so helpful to me. i went home on the 21st and was very sore and tired for days. after a week home i started walking in the morning. im doing ok, but blood presure is still problem. have been seeing cardiologist in pitts. i was walking the halls of hospital by wed. with the surgery having been on mon. im 56 and am grateful for all they did for me. email me if u need more info. john

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lynn S. (---.dsl.dytnoh.ameritech.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 19:59

    Dear Howie,

    I'm happy to answer your questions & to share my experiences. I've been reflecting on them quite a bit recently as I head out this weekend for my 6 week post-op appt on Monday the 14th!

    My post-op experience: I have had 2 other major surgeries so far in my lifetime & I have to say this was the best experience of all of them - before, during and after surgery. CCF gives you a real sense of community and support not just from the staff but also from patients around you. The nurses in ICU are incredible and I fully believe they should be called a 'doctor' in their own rights! The nurses on the cardiac floor (the regular room) were equally impressive to me as well - I always felt as though they could help/answer/find info for me without hesitation! I was always given plenty of attention by the nurses but also I felt empowered to aide in my own recovery while I was there.

    5 weeks post-op: I felt the benefit of the surgery the first day I was released from the hospital. I squatted down to pick up something and stood up without my vision blackening out (a pre-myectomy problem). At 5 weeks and counting I have been able to pull weeds in the yard, walk, care for my 2.5 year old daughter during the day, cook/light chores some, etc. I just have to balance activity with rest periods as I do still get tired.

    Recovery: OK, I'll be honest here - it's heart surgery and you are sore, achy and have range of motion issues. HOWEVER, every day since the surgery I have been able to find improvements in all of this. I am amazed at how quickly the body heals itself & you can start moving into a regular routine. The fact that the nurses get you up to walk ASAP (I walked the next day after surgery in ICU) makes a huge difference, continued movement and walking are essential to recovery. Becoming impatient during the recovery period is a tough thing to handle at times for me but, I know what a difference the surgery has already made to how I feel so that helps to ground me during the 'slow' days. On the days that I am extra tired I just think to myself, "Honestly, I felt worse before my surgery, this is something I can work through.".

    I hope this helps you out, please feel free to let me know if I can answer other questions for you. (My apologies for the length of this note...)

    Lynn

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Howard Mirchin (---.proxy.aol.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 20:58

    Thanks for the support, I only wish I could have found this support group earlier. I will keep everybody posted through my journey to Cleveland.

    Howie

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 21:11

    John I have been worried about you... I have not heard from you. I saw Dr. Asher this past weekend and he said you were fine, I was happy to hear that!

    Hope all is well and I hope your b/p issues balance out soon.

    All the best

    Lisa

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lynn S. (---.dsl.dytnoh.ameritech.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 21:12

    Howie,

    All the best with everything please do let us know how things are going!

    Lynn

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lynn S. (---.dsl.dytnoh.ameritech.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 21:12

    P.S. Hey Jerry!! How are you doing?

    L

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Tim Stewart (---.lexis-nexis.com)

    Date: 10-08-02 21:15

    Also ... make sure you start a page at "http://www.thestatus.com" to keep us all informed on your progress. There are computers on each recovery floor to allow you (or whomever is with you) to update the page each day. It was a godsend to be able to communicate Lynn's progress to everyone at home during our stay in Cleveland.

    - Tim Stewart (Lynn's other half)

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 21:21

    Hey Tim and Lynn... Are you two going to make it to the meeting in June? I may have a job for you!

    Lisa

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: john jordan (---.public.lawson.webtv.net)

    Date: 10-08-02 21:54

    hi lisa, i did post a message on the 25th of sept. when i got back to my home as i was recuperating at friends. i did have surgery on july 15th. u were correct no valves needed to be replaced once myectomy was done and the two bypasses were done. dr. asher and dr. smedira were great as was cleveland clinic. ive been feeling ok. my bp is up and im on two metropolols a day and today a diovan was added. im back to work as of the 20th of sept. was wiped out the first week but am feeling stronger. i know u have been busy from reading the posts. im so grateful to all who helped me. im still overwhelmed by the whole experience. thanx for all the support. john

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    [Re: Surgical Facility Decision]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 10-09-02 07:39

    In your line of work... I am sure you have an amazing amount of support.... remember you always come first when it comes to your health!

    Lisa
    NOTE: This is a post from the previous forum message board.

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