August 6, 2005–heart attack?

Today is Saturday.  Mother is still in the hospital.  About 1:30 a.m. Thursday morning she came downstairs, freshly showered and dressed, woke me up and said the heaviness she has been feeling in her chest off and on all day was much worse than it had ever been.  (this is the first I had heard of it that day!)

I took her to the emergency room, and they admitted her about 5:30 in the morning.  She had not yet had her first appointment with her cardiologist, but that very doctor took over her care, which we appreciated.

Thursday we were told that a “fiber” attached to a valve in her left ventricle is broken, allowing “significant” back wash.  Hence her heart is enlarged from the extra work.  (Mother knew it was enlarged, but not why.  Also knew of the “murmur” but not how serious)

We asked what would be done, and the doctor said “open heart surgery, if we could find a surgeon to operate on a 90 year old.”  Mother said she was not afraid of surgery if it would mean significant improvement of quality of life, even with the “risks.”  I pointed out that even if the heart surgery was completely successful, her body is no longer strong and she could suffer other complications related to the operation that had nothing to do with her heart.

She agreed not to make a hasty decision and to try the treatment the cardiologist was recommending.  (I also told her she has already done a “quite sufficient job, thank you, of proving how tough she was!”  She laughed.)

Friday, after ultrasounds of her carotid arteries (fairly clear) and another of her heart, it was determined that the seepage was not as bad as originally though.  Today she is going for more tests to try to determine if what she experienced was a heart attack.  I’m sure you’ve read, as I have, that symptoms in women are far more generalized than in men.

She is comfortable, has no more pressure, is pain free and bored out of her mind.  The hospital is quite close, so I go over twice a day.  The animals miss her—I have to get them out of her room at night.  Maki especially has become quite attached to Gram.

Please keep her in your prayers.  She and I both have said that after all we went through to get her to Georgia, she needs to stick around for a while to enjoy it.  It has been a joy to watch her relax and open up.


About estherfromolmsted

written and maintained by Tina
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