Saturday, October 09, 2010

Father-in-Law's Heart

Father-in-Law (FIL) is 90 years old. He had a deteriorating aortic valve. In July he began a process to apply for a trial heart valve replacement program at Mayo Clinics in Rochester, MN. He had to go to Mayo many times over the last three months for various tests. At first he was told he could not get into the trial program because he was "too healthy." He was disappointed, because he really wanted to avoid open heart surgery if at all possible.

The trial program puts in a replacement heart valve made of cow tissue. It goes in through a vein in the groin and therefore is much less invasive than open heart surgery.

Finally he was accepted into the program and told that he would have his surgery in late October. Meanwhile, his valve begin to deteriorate at an alarming rate. He was getting very sick and weak. He ended up in the hospital with congestive heart failure. The doctors were alarmed at his poor health and decided to push his surgery date up.

Surgery took place yesterday, October 8, and the effects were immediate! Right after surgery, FIL looked much better. A couple hours later, he looked supremely better. Ten hours after surgery he declared, "I expected to feel this good in about six weeks."

Because he is part of a trial program, he will stay in the hospital for several days while they complete tests and collect data. He is helping future generations avoid the trauma of open heart surgery. As doctors learn more about this less-invasive option, more of us can look forward to a short stay and a quick recovery from this type of surgery in our later years. Hallelujah!

Mother-in-Law (MIL) has been extremely worried since July and is very thankful that the operation has finally happened. Everyone is thrilled to report that FIL is doing wonderfully and making a speedy recovery. It's like watching a miracle unfold in front of one's own eyes!

(I'm resuming my gratitudes list after a long hiatus.. it helps me to give thought to a thankfulness list and to publicize it. So my thankfulness list is back.)

Today I'm thankful for:
1. medical miracles
2. laughs with family
3. gorgeous autumn colors
4. warm days and sunshine
5. pretty colored yarns (and the ability to knit)


Nancy said...

How exciting to hear the news and to see a medical wonder. I had no idea this procedure was even being tried. Praise the Lord for modern medicine.

Michele Bilyeu said...

I lost my 93 year old father to congestive heart failure, just last month. You are blessed to have this beautiful couple still in your lives and I am grateful for that for you and your entire family. Medicine and grace working hand in hand and miracles abound. I love his new t-shirt too, but not as much as his big, beautiful smile :)

BrendaLou said...

Praising God for medical miracles!

Anonymous said...

Carol: What wonderful news. Today I'm grateful to know your FIL is doing better, but I'm with you on the pretty colored yarns and autumn leaves, too!

Pattilou said...

Thanks for sharing your FIL's story. So thankful to for medical miracles!

Mary said...

oh wonderful. I am so happy for your father in law. Isn't medicine making wonderful advances. It wasn't that long ago that penicillin was the big miracle