Wednesday, February 1, 2012

All things LVAD

No news about a heart - still waiting.  Carlos remains stable.  The balloon pump helps a little but between it and the 2 IV meds, there hasn't been nearly as much improvement in how he's doing.  He's actually way more tired and sleeping more.  I think two things contribute...they keep his blood pressure very low ( around 83/60) and has been taking some pain meds for his back and leg.  He hates the lying flat and still all the time.  Can I just say - end-stage heart failure sucks.

The VAD coordinator came to see us.  She showed us the parts of the LVAD (Heartmate II).  Look under your sink and that's kinda what the inside part looks like, but on a smaller scale.  She went through all the details, potential risks and complications, surgery, and rehab.  It was excellent informed consent.  Of course I had all my questions.  It's very scary but the reality is we have reached a point where the three outcomes are death, alive with heart transplant, alive with the LVAD.  So, sign him up!  But we continue to hope a transplant will come through by Friday. We would rather skip the whole machine in the chest thing. The good news if do go with a pump, is that he likely will have better quality of life than he has over the last few weeks. The bad news is, he will go status 7 until he rehabs enough.

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