Aortic dissection, aortic aneurysm - The aorta - Life after an aortic dissection
I'm 64, married for over 30 years, no longer work (art gallery assistant) and no children. Oh, and we live in Cumbria in the north of England which is incredibly beautiful. That's me in a nutshell except I have Marfan syndrome, had a planned aortic valve & root replacement in 2007 and from a remark made by my surgeon at that time 'luckily' realised I was having a dissection on 19th March last year which no doubt speeded things up in A & E as far as diagnosis was concerned.
I was in Keswick, on the way to meet a couple of friends for a 'girlie' afternoon. Instead, gripping vice-like pain in my back, tried dialling 999 but too breathless to speak! A pharmacy yards away got an ambulance within minutes and so to the nearest hospital and a CT scan. All within about an hour. Unfortunately my self diagnosis proved right, not the afternoon with mates I'd hoped for!
It's a type B AD and after consultation with the Freeman hospital in Newcastle decided it was too extensive to operate and management by medication was the option. To cut a long story short, the first doctor was totally gloomy about my prognosis, a few months to live if lucky, the second doc a week later a bit more pragmatic and in between I was shunted from ward to ward like a waif and stray, all in a slight fog of morphine! After 2 weeks (and an effective laxative) I was allowed home with a carrier bag of pills and what seemed to me a poor prognosis.
Now all that's a year ago. I gave up work and love being at home (feel safe) and going out alone is still a bit of a challenge. I still have the ticking time bomb feeling but try to push it to the back of my mind and just get on with stuff, pace myself and rely on gut feeling as to what & how much I do (Kimberley's advice!). I feel much more positive!
I haven't met anyone else in person with a similar experience so find this website helps fill that gap and is supportive, informative and intriguing; dip into it from time to time and am gradually working my way through the blogs and forum. Thanks everyone, especially Graeme & Greg for their welcoming words.
That's it for now, gone on enough... Be pleased to hear from anyone with Marfan's who's also had an AD to compare notes!
Warm regards, Mo.
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