Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Story Continues

Where were we...

The remainder of 2010 was ok - it took a bit longer to settle back into complacency but we did.  We did make the switch to a cardiology practice that took the Mayo Clinic recommendations a bit more serious.  They placed Carlos in a study for Bi-Ventricular Pacemakers.  He had this fancy pacemaker put in around September of last year.  We were told that he had a third of a chance at great improvement, a third of a chance for small improvement, and a third of a chance that he would see no improvement at all.  So we went for it.  We've been very happy with Tri-City Cardiology and Dr Marc Berkowitz.

This year, up until about the beginning of October, was uneventful.  At that time, I noticed that Carlos appeared pretty lethargic.  He would have good days and bad days prior to this, but it seemed to become a constant string of bad days.  He began sleeping approximately 15-16 hours a day - not all at once, but lots of napping throughout the day.

On Halloween night - which figures, as it's my second favorite holiday and we had plans to watch scary movies all night and eat junk food :p, Carlos started to experience mild chest pain early in the evening.  I had him lie down while I checked his blood pressure.  After about ten minutes, when the pain wasn't going away, I told him I was taking him to the ER.  He was admitted and the next morning they told us they thought he had a  myocardial infarction (MI) or heart attack.  We were very surprised - an MI hadn't really crossed my mind - even with the chest pain.  Both his heart cath in 2002 and 2010 showed no coronary artery disease (CAD)!

He was transferred to another hospital so his cardiologist could provide care and do another heart cath.  Again, no CAD.  That was the good news.  So no heart attack.  But the bad news was that Carlos' heart function was worse and worse than it had been prior to the upgraded pacemaker :p  It was a tough day that day.  I'll never forget sitting in the waiting room during the heart cath (I get very nervous when he has these down so my mom and a friend, Heidi, were keeping me company) and Dr Berkowitz coming to tell me that it was bad and we needed to get the Mayo Clinic involved again.  My heart dropped into my shoes :p

That afternoon I was on the phone with the Mayo clinic and they were able to get him in the following week for a consult with the same CHF specialist on the transplant team we had met the year before.  After meeting with Dr Steidley the following week, it was decided to re-evaluate Carlos' condition and need for transplantation.  Yea, more waiting rooms.  Fun.  More poking and prodding for him.  Woo. Hoo.  Carlos was rapidly developing a distaste for hospitals but I told him to suck it up and get over it.  He would do whatever was necessary to stay with us.

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