My Heart Journey
After I was diagnosed with Postpartum Cardiomyopathy (PPCM) in 1992, my heart gradually decline. I share with you the stages my heart failure condition took from Implantable Cardiac Device (ICD) to Heart transplant.
What is an Implantable Cardiac Device (ICD)? And How is it used?
Pretty cool to see my ICD inside my body. (2010)
What is a Mitral Valve? And How is it repaired in the body?
My first open-heart surgery to repair my mitral valve that was damaged by a silent heart attack.(2013)
What is an LVAD? And How is it used for the heart?
David Snipelisky MD
Brian Howard MD
My second open-heart surgery. I was diagnosed with stage 4 heart failure in March 2019. I received the left ventricular assist device (LVAD) until I could get a heart transplant. It can be a lifesaver for those who are not able to get a heart transplant. (2019)
Baqir Lakhani DO
My LVAD team
This picture was taken after my LVAD surgery. I do not remember if I'm asleep or awake. However, I was in a lot of pain.
My veins became invisible and non-active, so my Cardiologist requested a PICC line for long-term intravenous (IV) antibiotics or medications, and blood draws. What a lifesaver.
What is a Heart in a Box? And How is it used in Heart Transplant patients?
My third open-heart surgery. I received my "heart in a box" on March 1, 2020, from Vanderbilt Transplant Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee.
What a great blessing.
Before being placed on the heart transplant list, I had to take an allergy test. Each letter represents a type of medication and its own needle place under my skin to injected various meds to determine if I was allergic to them.
My heart transplant surgeon
My ICU heart transplant nurses. I ask them if I could go outside, and they surprise me with a "yes". I will miss them.
It's nothing like having my chest cut open and having my sternum crack open on three different occasions. At least the surgeons were kind to use the same starting point from my first open-heart surgery.