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Sep 24, 2019 · Husband feels he is not going to last long in Stroke & Cerebrovascular Diseases

I have a weird question but it's concerning me. My husband had several strokes which turned out was being caused by a faulty valve replacement – the hospital where we live could not give us any answers and kept insisting the valve wasn't the cause. We took him to Mayo where they immediately diagnosed the valve problem and did emergency valve replacement with a mechanical heart. He is fine physically although very fatigued but he has severe cognitive issues and no self motivation which is so different than he was before this last stroke which was pretty massive. He keeps telling me that he feels very deeply that he won't last very long and definitely feels he won't reach 65. I keep asking him if it's because he feels the mechanical heart beating or if he's not feeling well or feeling depressed but he says that he's not worried or concerned and that he feels fine but he just has this inner feeling that he won't be with us very long. I've taken him to doctors and psychiatrists to make sure there isn't something going on (such as depression) but he's been given a clean bill of health with the exception of his cognitive issues. Has anybody else experienced this? He has been through so much but I have to admit his absolute conviction that he is going to die young is freaking me out – I don't want to just ignore his feelings and he doesn't dwell on it but just says it occasionally during normal conversation. I am afraid that if I just dismiss his feelings, he will stop talking to me about it

Aug 14, 2019 · Husband's stroke recovery: What can I expect for the future? in Stroke & Cerebrovascular Diseases

He says he enjoys going back to work but he is exhausted after the 3 hours on the 3 days a week he goes in. He doesn't really seem to get frustrated but he does ger lazy and apathetic about things. I feel most of that is the healing as he was a very energetic person before and I think part of the apathy is fatigue which will be here for a while between the stroke and the long and involved open-heart surgery he endured. Thanks for asking – wasn't sure anyone would remember me.

Aug 13, 2019 · Husband's stroke recovery: What can I expect for the future? in Stroke & Cerebrovascular Diseases

This will be a fairly long explanation but I’ll try and keep as brief as possible. My husband had a valve replacement and then got a blood infection which destroyed the valve, he then had a a TAVR which seemed to be succesful and much shorter recovery than open heart. Within months after this he started experiencing strokes – they were initially small and came out of nowhere but each one, of course, caused an injury to his brain. I kept telling the doctors at our hospital in NC that I believed the strokes were somehow caused by the valve but they kept insisting it was not – he was put on blood thinners but he kept having strokes. He had one that caused some memory loss so they put him on Eliquis thinking that would solve the issue. In April he had a massive stroke (his 6th in total) and initially had complete paralysis on his left side – they were going to do surgery to remove the clot but then he started being able to move again so they put him in ICU. He could not get the strong blood thinner as he was already on blood thinners so they just watched him. They did tests (as they had done for his previous strokes) and insisted it was not the valve and when I asked what I should do since there was obviously a problem, they told me to just watch him. At that point I told them I was taking him to Mayo and got an appt in MN 10 days after. Mayo saved my husband’s life – Dr. Scharf told me nobody should have this many strokes without a physical cause and he felt it was the valve. They did the same tests as the hospital in NC and I believe a couple of extra ones and found that blood was forming behind the valve, causing clots and, in turn, causing the strokes. Dr. Pochettino (my angel) did a 12 hour surgery to remove everything the hospital in NC had done and replaced it with a mechanical heart – it was a successful surgery but his cognitive issues were horrible at first. He couldn’t remember much of anything, was talking nonsense and had a vacant stare which was frightening – they said some of it was what they call ICU dementia and he would get better. Bottom line is that when we returned to NC in mid-May, I immediately got him into speech therapy for his cognitive issues – it’s been slow and he still has pretty severe memory issues but it has improved. He is working 3 days a week with a helper to make sure he doesn’t make any mistakes. My question is, what do I expect for the future? I have been grieving the loss of our normal life but I’m thrilled my husband is alive. I don’t know how long the cognitive therapy continues to improve his cognition and since he’s a realtor, he doesn’t make any money until he does a sale so we are living on my salary which is a little scary. He’s in his 50’s and is still very fatigued from everything he has gone through. Can anyone tell me if there is hope or should I just accept what is and try to move on.

Apr 28, 2019 · Complex case - what to expect in Visiting Mayo Clinic

We just arrived at Mayo on Thursday and had our initial discussion with our doctor (who is wonderful) – we had a couple of tests scheduled and an E-Consult. In getting the report from the doctor doing the E-Consult it stated my husband should have additional tests and meet face to face with the doctor and his team who did the E-consult. Our plan is to be here until next Saturday – do they usually call to set up the additional tests and the meeting with the other doctor? I am not sure if I should be calling or if they will call.