Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Little Break in the Schedule for Dan Coonan

Looks like it's time to fix the old model.  I'll be getting the motor overhauled.  This is just an update on my upcoming surgery, and a slightly belabored explanation of the procedures, to answer those who have been asking.  Here goes:
I am entering the Texsan Heart Hospital here in San Antonio this Wednesday for four separate heart procedures:
Wednesday, 16 July at 10:00 am:
1.       Trans Esophageal Echocardiogram (TEE).  A video sensor is inserted down the esophagus to determine the precise location of the electrical tissue that has been misfiring, causing a dangerous condition of atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat).  AT leads to ventricular tachycardia (VT), a deadly, excessively rapid heartbeat (180+ beats per minute).
2.       Ablation of electrical pathway. The TEE will be followed by an ablation (cauterization) of that tissue by inserting a device through a vein/artery in the groin. Eliminating that tissue should bring my heartbeat back into normal rhythm.
Friday, 18 July at 10:00 am:
3.       Mitral valve repair.  I will be moved back to the surgical suite where the surgeon will open my chest and transfer my heart functions to a heart-lung machine.  He will then open the heart itself and repair a leaking mitral valve.  This valve is supposed to receive oxygenated blood from the lungs through the right atrium and pass it to the right ventricle for delivery to the body through the aorta. The leak now creates a back pressure into the lungs and is responsible for my congestive heart failure. 
4.       Intra-atrial perforation repair.  While the surgeon is inside the heart, he will also close a hole between the two atria in the upper chambers of my heart.  This condition has caused a mixing of the blood coming back from the body and the oxygen rich blood being sent back out. The oxygen-poor blood is not sufficient to meet my body’s demand and makes me exhausted and light-headed all the time.
These procedures are not the same as the bypass surgery and stent emplacements I have had in the past which now keep the blood flowing through arteries previously blocked by atherosclerosis.  All is good on that front.  So, once these new procedures are completed, I’ll be the new bionic man. 
Please keep me in your prayers,
Dan Coonan


1 comment:

RogWild said...

Hang in there Dan; you've got many 'team members' wishing you a speedy recovery! Rog Wildermuth, Forbes AFB, KS '71