Firstly, I had successful open heart surgery aged 4 to correct VSD and nevr had any further problems...
UNTIL aged 19 they discovered that my aortic valve is leaking. The consultant said I would need surgery sometime within 10 years. I´m now 25 and I´m starting to worry alot. I´ve been told that it will be a tissue replacement and this will need to then be replaced every 10 years or so. First worry: How many times can my heart and breast bone take surgery?
I really want to start a family in the next few years and I´ve been told I can but not advisable and If I do become pregnant, I´ll need to be monitored closely during and after. I live in Brazil and they have said it´s adviseable to be in the UK for any treatment or pregnancy. I feel like i´m in a catch 22 situation. My life is here and yet without surgery and medical support, what life would I have and for how long? (But then again what life would I have without my partner, job and home?!)
I´m feeling at a loss. I´m terrified of going back in for surgery. I can remember details from the first time around like waking up in ITU with a drain coming out of my chest, The pain from the scars, breathing and generally moving about. My stitches split and seeing blood and god knows what pouring out of my chest at such a young age has stuck in my mind and caused nightmares and panic attacks ever since and I don´t know how I´m going to cope with this as an adult (I can´t even have a routine blood test without fainting)
I´m sick of hospitals, tests and worrying when I´m going to have to have surgery and I´m looking for some advice please.. I know all the ins and outs of the surgery but I´d like to hear from other women who´ve had this or have yet to have surgery and how that´s affected you during pregnancy. Also, anyone who has had tissue valve replacement and any advice or peace of mind you could possibly give me. Thank you so much and a long and happy life to all.