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Xmas fun

No comments · Posted by Rusty

Big day on Sat. Steph organized a Xmas party for 101 foster children as part of her Pyjama Angels program See . She had Santa come in a fire truck, jumping castle, face painting, bbq, drinks presents for every kid and more. I did a lot of the carrying, setting up tents, tables etc and my body was hurting at the end of the day. I think I was aslepp before my head hit the pillow at 8pm!

I had a game of golf last week too and paid the price - the replaced knee regressed and I dont suppose the long kayak paddle and rock 'n roll dancing at a friends birthday party in Coff Hbr helped either!

Its a bit hard to stay doing nothing and letting the body heal....

I'm seeing the heart specialist this Thurs and will be wanting to know what's next. I still get breathless on occasions (not just in the morning when I wake up and roll over to look at my wife!!!) and it's obvious the stent hasn't made a huge difference.

Right now I just want to enjoy Christmas and the holidays.

May you all do the same - stay safe, recharge the batteries and why not do what I'm doing over the holidays. Do up a list of 101 things you would like to do, see, have or experience before you die!

Cheers all

Mood: Music: Location:




No comments · Posted by Rusty

Home again with a brand new stent in place and feeling goood!

I got a call from the hospital at 9pm on Tues asking if I could go in at 6am Wed. I was on the operating table at 7.30, into ICU by 8.30 and then into coronary care unit by 11.00.

Everything was great so I checked out at 4pm, had a brilliant sleep last night and now got my first game of golf for ages booked next week and did a few laps of the pool this morning.

The surgeon said the blockage was severe and he had to thread the stent through the two that are already in place so a bit delicate. Now I have a coronary artery that works which means the heart should be less stressed and I can start being more active again.

As far as the valve goes, its not going to kill me in the short term and it seems there are advances in the alternative replacement methods so the longer I can wait, the more likely I can get a satisfactory result.


Yesterday is ancient history, tomorrow is not guaranteed so make the most of today!

Mood: Music: Location:



Next step

No comments · Posted by Rusty

I saw my heart specialist on Wed and he confirmed that he can insert another stent to clear the blockage so Wed 28th I'm back into Pindarra hospital. I already have 2 in the right coronary artery and this one has to be slid through the two in place to reach the blockage. This was going to be fixed by the bypass surgery.

I got this from a hospital website

Stent Placement

Stent Placement

What is a stent placement?

A stent is a wire mesh stainless steel tube that holds an artery open and keeps it from closing again. It becomes a permanent part of your artery.

Why is it necessary?

Fatty deposits can block blood flow through arteries and cause pain. A piece may break off, form a clot, and cause a heart attack or stroke. A stent opens the blockage and keeps it open, which allows blood to flow smoothly. Good blood flow reduces pain and risks of clots forming.

How is it done?

The doctor will insert a tiny, flexible plastic tube called a catheter through an artery in our groin, leg, or arm. A special dye is injected so blood flow through the arteries is visible on the TV monitors. The doctor moves a balloon catheter, and then a stent, to the site of the blockage. The balloon is inflated and stretched wide against the artery walls, which opens the blockage. Then the balloon is deflated and taken out, leaving the stent in place.

The next procedure is the "interesting" one as it hasnt been done in Australia before and the success rate isnt as high as I'd like.

It involves sliding an artificial aortic valve up from the groin through the femoral artery to the aortic valve and into the valve itself. Like a stent it is then inflated to sit within the valve and take over from it.

Still lots of research and experimentation so the suggestion is to delay it as long as possible so thats what I'll do. It will still probably have to be done sometime next year so if it can be done in Australia I'll be a medical first if, not it could be the USA.

Watch this space!

Mood: Music: Location:



Got the attitude back

3 comments · Posted by Rusty

Well I gave myself a good talking to last night and felt much better about life today.

Its so easy to fall into a black hole and focus on what's going wrong and all through my life I've tried to find something good out of every situation (and not always easy) so I didn't like the black hole.

After coming out of hospital on Tues and hearing what actually went on while I was on the operating table I became overwhelmed with bad thoughts of what could happen and then on the same day to see my new perfect grand-daughter it sent my emotions on a ride from the giddy heights to the deep depths.

Yes that intense radiation of 1974 has given me many ruined blood vessels and damaged organs but it was also part of the treatment that has seen me live 38 years beyond what was expected and many hundreds of wonderful experiences.

Two things turned my thinking around. The first was a friend who rang to see how I was and after hearing the bad stuff asked me "what was on my bucket list". The second was our neighbour who has two little kids and they are right into batman. We were talking and she said to the kids "he's Batman cos he's superhuman" and I thought "why not"?

So today I started building a new bucket list and right at the top is to live long enough to see this new grand daughter (Poppy) turn 21.

I also know you need to have a project or something BIG to focus on so as not to have too much time to wallow in self pity. Like many people we also copped a hiding financially over the last few years so it's time to focus on creating amazing health and wealth.

Focus is the key so watch this space as I record the journey and I may even share the bucket list.

Rather than just bang away talking about me I'd love to hear what other people have to say and I'd like to hear about your bucket lists.

Will post reports of the next steps and the first is next Tues with my heart specialist. The critical issue here is the coronary artery blockage which is 90% and potentially fatal. This was going to be fixed with the bypass but now its hopefully by stent which is like a small metal cylinder slid up through the arteries from the groin or wrist and into place just before the heart. Only issue is that I already have two of them in place so getting another one throught hese two is the difficulty.

Thats why the specialists get paid so much. My guy is very good so together we'll fix that next week and then move onto the valve.

I could even make it into a special report in the medical journals.

Throw a positive comment in please because having people cheering brings out the best in everyone.

PS You will all be invited to the 70th and 80th birthday bash's!


Mood: Music: Location:



Not what I wanted

1 comments · Posted by Rusty

Well I didnt think Id be writing this today. Yesterday I was supposed to have had the surgery but I woke up in intensive care with no zipper down the front and no operation. 4 hours in theatre and a sore throat and oseophagus from camera and probe being pushed around and the result was - surgery not possible due to all veins in the neck having been destroyed by intense radiation treatment all those years ago (1974) when I had cancer. Other veins in the chest also damaged and it seems the arteries to the head are ok but the blood has found althernative ways of getting back from the head to the heart and the blood vessels in the chest are all mixed up.

Other organs such as lungs also scarred from that treatment. All of which means if they had proceeded as normal I'd now be lying on a slab in the morgue!

Alternative treatments are to substitute the bypass with yet another stent but I have 2 in place already in the coronary artery and the new stent would have to be pushed through these.The blockage is in the order of 90% so this is the priority. I'll see that surgeon in next day or so.

As for the valve replacement - looks like I'm off to see another specialist in Brisbane to see if he can do it through the groin. Fairly new procedure but again, damage to blood vessels might preclude that.

So my friends that is the situation. Not at all what I was expecting so who knows what the future may bring or how long that future may be.

On the upside I've just come back from Ipswich to visit my new granddaughter born at 8am this morning. Poppy Savannah Hakim arrived after very short labour and Angie already home from the delivery. She's GORGEOUS (not half biased)

Will keep you all in the loop via this blog as to what eventuates. Its been a roller coaster ride and the emotions are a bit all over the place right now. Have to get focussed on the positive.

Mood: Music: Location:

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