I was scheduled for a post-procedure check-up today. The doc--very bright guy named Mark Piatek (from Old Country)--explained to me that I had had not one but two stents emplaced, at a branching of the left circumplex artery.
This probably would mean, he said, that I would be on the blood-thinning meds for more than the 6 months to a year, which is the norm, because the overlapping of the stents made the possibility of clotting more pronounced, and therefore also amplified the possibility of a major 'event."--a euphemism for heart attack.
Then he his applied his stethoscope to the location of the incision, where the femoral artery is closest to the skin, in the right groin; whereupon he said he wished me to directly have a sonogram of the site. He suspected, he said, that there was a 'pseudo-aneurism' on the artery; which diagnosis was borne-out by said sonogram.
The pseudo-aneurysm occurred at the site of the incision into the femoral artery at which the catheter through which the angioplasty, angiogram and stents (plural) were inserted. It was described to me as a bubble, or sac, of blood. The weakening of the artery by the incision allowed the pseudo-aneurysm to form, and it was, in may case, about 3-4 mm in length.
The cure for this is 'compression.' This means that, under a medico's supervision, tomorrow I must submit to perhaps as much as 60 to 90 minutes of intense and steady pressure--by hand-- at the site of the incision. This is an intensely unpleasant experience, as I happen to know from the aftermath of the original procedure, when a lab-tech in the "cath unit" applied such pressure to the site of my incision for about 15 minutes after removing the catheter through which the procedures had been accomplished.
I supplied my own complication for this, of course, by virtue of not acquisecing to the desire of the doc to be admitted to the hospital right then. I explained that the dogs required that I--or someone, anyway--be available at home to (1) feed them and (2) move them about into their various domiciles and permit them necessary access to the yard in which they might do their doggy doo-ties (this is necessary because they cannot all be together at anytime, due to some deep-seated but otherwise inexplicable doggie antipathies which require their separation). Interestingly, the hospital baulked at my NOT being admitted. Their procedures had normally required an in-patient stay and they had not done an out-patient procedure like this before. I suggested to the nurse that it was good that they broaden their scopes.
So, tomorrow, at 2:30pm, I am expected to present myself at the Heart Hospital. At this writing, I am not certain whether I shall be 'able'/'allowed' to drive myself home from the procedure, as it requires the administration of certain anaesthetic drugs which may interfere with my ability to operate power machinery (as if...).
I'll report when I can...
Discipline collar...(The New Yorker, natch)
3 days ago