I am happy to report my closure was done by Dr. Sherman Sorensen in Salt Lake City on June 16th. I was awake and alert during the procedure. A 25 milimeter Gore Helix device was placed and tested with bubbles, and found to have been 100% successful. I was monitored overnight in the hospital, and sent home on a full aspirin and one Plavix a day, as well as an antibiotic for a few days. I will have a follow-up examination on July 16.
To quickly update those who haven't read my previous postings, I am a 56 year old healthy woman who is about 15 pounds overweight, a vigorous exerciser, wife and mother of three grown children and one grandchild due any day (now overdue!). My symptoms were a long history of migraines, dizziness every day since February (prompting MRI and discovery of PFO), TIA's going back 30 years (I now know) with word confusion (speaking and writing) and memory impairment. The MRI revealed white spots on my brain and "age advanced mild cerebral and cerebellar volume loss" (which might account for the dizziness). I was also experiencing overall severe symptoms whenever life stresses increased, such as severe headaches, severe dizziness, inability to concentrate, heart palpatations, diarrhea, vision problems, increased asthma symptoms, anxiety, shortness of breath, and decreased tolerance for exercise.
My recovery has gone well, with 3 days of laying around, followed by resumption of normal activities including walking about 2 miles every other day. I have not resumed weight lifting yet, but have added to the distance and speed of my walks. So far, I haven't felt like walking every day, but that I need to rest in between days. I retired from working last September, so I haven't had to go to work, but I work around my house and yard. The first few days I had some twinges of heart pain felt in my back near my left shoulderblade but deeper inside my chest and radiating down my left inner arm. I took ibuprophen for the pain, but then experienced some nose bleeds, so I stopped taking ibuprophen. I haven't had those pains for a few days now. I had a couple of minor headaches for which I took Tylenol. The dizziness is still there, but much, much less. Dr. Sorensen says this may be permanant damage from a stroke or TIAs, but may improve over the next few months. If not, I will try rehabilitation at a balance clinic. I tire easily at times, but other than those few symptoms, I feel I am recovering well.
My daughter hasn't had our grandchild yet, so I got this over with prior to travels to Boise for the birth, and I'm so grateful for that. Next Tuesday (June 30th) I will have 2 weeks of healing behind me!! I thank everyone on this forum for the information and guidance they have given me, and hope to do the same for others.