Kenneth and Elvina!
I completely understand what you are going through, but, please remember, you are going to an experienced center, and that is KEY! My calcification was 11mm's thick.....I think I have the record here for thickness, I know I had at Cleveland........I had my surgery there, altho, I did visit Mayo as well. The reason I picked Cleveland was they are able to do the pericardiectomy going under the breast, and in between the ribs, versus opening up the sternum. My heart was NOT covered in it. I had large area's all over the heart.the thickest point was the right Ventricle....and as Mozerk had mentioned, normally the right Ventricle is worse......I was told by my surgeon because of the way the heart sits, gravity tends to make it thicker on that side. They were able to gage my thickness with Cardiac Catherization, and MRI...I had that done at Cedar Sinai Medical Center in LA. As you can see, I visited a LOT of hospitals.....I was at the point where if I didn't have surgery, my right ventricle was ready to cave in, the calcification was weakening the wall, and I had no more time to wait. I live in Las Vegas, and our local newspaper went with us, and documented the entire surgery, if you interested in reading the articles, there are three of them, let me know, and I will forward them too you. The reason they wanted to document it, is because it is so rare, and being that they do not know the cause......the disease remains a mystery. I know your both worried, and so were all of us, that have gone through it......BUT...every single one of us went through it with flying colors....I didn't have to go on a bypass machine....and I was only in ICU for 24 hours, and out of the hospital in five days........amazing! I feel like a new person, and like NAN........I had the same symptoms.....no energy.....jugular vein distention, enlarged liver....acsites, arrythmia's. Since surgery I have lost over 25 pds...my heart has NOT had an EXTRA heartbeat, I had the first NORMAL EKG in FOUR YEARS! Its like I never had the disease....except for my lack of energy, but, I didn't go through the cardiac rehab after, and I think I just need to build myself up, after practically being bed bound for three years. The Mayo Clinic is a fantastic hospital....YOU are in great hands!!! YOU can ask your doctors how THICK your calcification is.....I am sure they know. Just remember, we have all been through it.....and are all living full lives now. It was the best decision I ever made. I had kept postponing my surgery out of fear........then I found this site......and found friends that had been through it, after listening to them, it finally gave me the courage to go through with it. To wait is not good, you are doing the right thing, and before you know it......YOu will be looking back at it, as we are all now, and thankful its over!!!!! If you want the newspaper articles chronicling my surgery, and before......let me know. YOUR going to do GREAT, you are in excellent HANDS!....and good luck and God bless! Cathy