It’s been 8 years ….. REALLY ?
I just realized this morning it has been 8 years since the morning I finally dialed 911 as my mind went back to August 2005. Every time I get a chance to tell my story I do because it may get that one person to the doctor to check out that unusual swelling, the inability to lay down, the constant cough, trouble breathing, the inability to walk up a flight of steps with out feeling like you are going to pass out. I think this was the time when I knew that there was a power greater then myself that saved me that august day. It wasn’t me because I would have prevented CHF. I would have prevented the leaky aortic valve. I would have prevented life threatening abnormally fast heart rhythms that cause sudden death.
It got me to thinking especially on Wednesday (INR day) I am greeted with “what was your INR” and by those in the know simply “what was your number.”
All conversations now involve a pleura of alphabet soup letters.
INR (International Normalized RATIO) is a test to determine the clotting tendency (coagulation) of blood and is most commonly used in monitoring the accuracy of the blood thinning product Coumadin. I must be tested regularly to ensure my INR stays within a specific INR range With an AVR my target range is 2.8 to 3.5, (a healthy individuals range is .8) this enables the blood to flow thru it with no chance of clotting and keeps this quarter size device ticking. My INR will be checked and monitored for the remainder of my life.
ICD(implantable cardiac defibrillator) is a small electronic device installed inside the chest to prevent sudden death from cardiac arrest due to life threatening abnormally fast heart rhythms (tachycardias). The ICD is capable of monitoring the heart rhythm. When the heart is beating normally, the device remains inactive. If the heart develops a life-threatening tachycardia, the ICD delivers an electrical “shock(s)” to the heart to terminate the abnormal rhythm and return the heart rhythm to normal.
AVR (aortic mechanical valve) is a prosthetics designed to replicate the function of the natural aortic valve. The main purpose is to maintain unimpeded forward flow through the heart and from the heart into the major blood vessels connected to the heart, the pulmonary artery and the aorta.
Heart Disease is the leading killer of both men and woman between the ages of 40 and 55 and if caught early can be treated. I am a good example of being caught “just in time.” I did not take it serious enough in November 2003 when the early warning signs put me in intensive care, hell I did not take serious the unexplained swelling of my feet as far back as 2000. Now I live with a Heart of an 86 year old ; trying to figure out the way with the past and present, so I can comprehend the future…
CONSIDER AND APPLY