I am 26, female, average weight, athletic. Recently, I was diagnosed with multifenstrated ASD/PFO. I have access to cardiologist due to my occupation. I am the girl that performs echocardiograms, bubble studies, and TEEs at a nearby hospital. After talking to one cardiologist, he strongly recommends to not close the hole until I have a TIA/CVA. Another cardiologist thinks I should close it. So I went to a pediatric cardiologist, who wants to close the ASD/PFO. During our consultation with the pediatric cardiologist he asked if I was allergic to nickel. As it turns out I am allergic to nickel. I cannot wear any costume jewelry, silver...etc. The closure devices that are FDA approved are made out of Nitinol. A mesh material that is 55% nickel and 45% titanium. Because I am allergic to nickel he wanted me to wear the device on my skin to see if I would have a reaction. I had a full blown allergic reaction in under 12 hours. Because of this I am afraid to use the device.
My options are:
1. Use the nickel device and possibly experience: arrhythmias, chest pain, increased migraines, pericardial effusion, etc. If allergic reaction persists then I would need emergent open heart surgery and removal of closure device. After device is removed they will close the ASD/PFO with a patch or piece of my pericardium. 2. Do open heart surgery from the get go.
I don't like either choice. Should I just stay on asprin, and monitor my heart. Maybe in a couple years there will be a better option for those suffering from allergy to nickel. Is there anyone on here with an allergy to nickel that got the pfo closure device?