Hello, everybody.....I am 58, and in Scottsdale, Arizona. For a few years I've been experiencing increasing shortness of breath on exertion. Even talking makes me gasp for air. Going to higher altitudes gives me headaches and my lips turn cyanotic. I have oxygen now at my bedside, and in my car. I developed a chronic cough to the point of choking in 1997, and was diagnosed with Asthma. I've been through every diagnostic test with my cardiologist and pulmonologist, even a neurologist. Everything is normal. My life became just visits to medical appointments. Otherwise, I stayed home and only had a window of 5-6 hours before I had to go back to bed. I prepared to die soon, as it was getting worse. Life was not interesting or fun anymore. I've been on social Security Disability over 20 years now, for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (but now I'm wondering if that is just not a diagnosis slapped on symptoms when they cannot find the cause.)As a last ditch effort, I went to the Mayo Clinic because I wanted the very best doctors to take one last look and my insurance covered it. The Arizona branch is 15 minutes from me. The cardiologist sent me for test after test until they finally, after a TEE, found the PFO. I don't know the size as every time I ask, the doctor says it doesn't matter. I think he's trying not to scare me. I was in the pre-op room, IV in, husband took off work, to have the closure, when they canceled it because I had a 99 degree fever and white cells left over from a UTI (urinary tract infection) I was sooo mad, but understand the reasoning. I am not worried about the procedure. I won't like lying flat for 6 hours. But I am very upset after hearing all the side effects of Plavix. I can't understand that following a study that showed being on a higher dose of aspirin does the same job, it is still prescribed. I'm going to do my best to talk my way off of it. By the way, I never had a headache, and never had a tia or stroke. Just numbingly tired, short of breath, and coughing and choking. Last week, without any pain, dizziness or any warning, my legs just gave out and I sat down on the floor. I have not told my doctor about this, but after reading, wonder if it wasn't a small tia? My surgeon is on vacation this week and it is tenatively scheduled for the 29th of July. I had to take another urine culture and will find out tomorrow from his nurse, if I'm clear. I am so grateful for this site and hearing everyone's story. I think when we know what to expect and what we will deal with, we find a way to work through it. Not knowing is worse than anything. Please keep talking of your experiences, and I'll keep updating mine.