My robotic mitral valve replacement surgery

I went into the hospital on Monday April 17, 2023 for my surgery.

None the less they came out and told my family they had started the surgery and I was on the heart lung machine this was at 9:00 a.m. My family could not see me until 7:00 p.m. that night.

I had wires and needles every where cartoid artery and femoral elbow wrist plus more. Drainage tube in ribs on the right side.

They have to deflate you lung to do this surgery but my lungs suck so afterwards I was 80% oxygen x 5 days and 60% for 4 days then they weaned me down from there. Oxygen high volume makes my nose throw clots not a fun thing.

My sister said once I made it to the 1st ICU recovery I had 3 IV poles with 4 computers on each one a tube jetting out my neck and a breathing tube. I really could not prepare anyone for all this because I did not know.

When I moved to second ICU room the breathing tube came out THANK GOD. I think it was day 3 the drainage tube came out oh geeze that was a relief.

Second night after the drainage tube was removed it leaked all over me in the night. By this point I am doing breathing treatments 4 x a day.

I really never was in pain from the actual procedue I think they said there are 6 incisions.

I was in AFIB going into surgery and coming out. I developed pneumonia from the AFIB so this means IV antibiotics.

IV lasix to get offf about 15#s of fluid from surgery. Thank goodness I had a catheter to pee it out.

I could not eat nothing tasted good, I still have no taste I went 9 days without eating anything and no I did not have a sodium IV drip they were pulling fluid off not adding it. Now at day 13 I am eating about 400 calories a day.

My potassium and magnesium both got low so yippee more IV junk.

My stomach hates meds it makes it burn so they gave me stuff to coat it.

I think it was day 4 I went to the ICU #3 the nurses do not bother you as much the cath came out and I can pee on my own but have to help with the IV pole.

Daily Xrays of my lungs, 3 echoes on my heart and a transesphogeal echo to check the valve and finally cardio version to stop the AFIB. They have me blowing in tubes to make me cough then it hurts to cough but I really do get it.

They had issues getting my INR in the blood to a therapeutic level so I could leave and be safe. It was the last minute on day 11. The international normalised ratio (INR) blood test tells you how long it takes for your blood to clot

I came home on the afternoon of day 11 on Thursday yesterday was my first full day home. I am so so glad to be home and so so grateful this much is behind me.

I have a mechanical valve so my INR has to be monitored every week or two. I take warfarin for this for the rest of my life.

ON day 12 I checked in with my cardio he said I am doing wonderful and he is is excited. He said I looked a little pale but he thinks its from the low BP.

Today is day 13 I feel pretty good , weak from not eating and now my BP is a bit low but I am getting there. Really the side where the drain was still hurts but that will get better over time. No other pain.

My family was great to visit me in the hospital and make me laugh. I am grateful to Jack my husband, Joshua and Cori our oldest son and his wife, Jeanelle our youngest daughter and Andrew my grandon, my sister Sheri and her husband David for making my time in the hospital go by faster. My mother n law who is 94 and kept checking on me she is the best. Love you all.

My recovery is 2 – 3 months before I can drive, pick up stuff thats heavier than 1 – 2 #s and have more energy again.

I am supposed to walk the distance I can without getting short of breath then stop and repeat 5 – 6 times a day. It is more about doing it often through out the day not all at once.

I had a team of wonderful skilled Drs from the Houston Medical Center and going with robotics it is a less invasive surgery to recover from.


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