Genetics Can Really Suck Sometimes

I'm bringing this over from Facebook for the few that read here, but don't have me over there. I won't be back to update this much later, so updates will need to be grabbed from our mutual friend....

This is going to be a bit long. I'm sorry for that. However, I'm anticipating the "OMG How'd THAT happen??" coming from the people that weren't in the loop yet and I want to be sure they have some background on it and see what we've been fighting.

A couple years ago, hubby came down sick.... really sick. He was sent in for some testing and then referred to a cardiologist. Turns out that he has a weakened heart. It could be genetic or it could be that he'd gotten a virus. We suspect that it's the former as the condition exists on both sides of his family. Gotta love genetics.  Anyhow, they put him on some meds to see if they could get the heart regulated somewhat. We were told it wouldn't get back to 100%, but with meds, diet, and proper care that it was possible that he'd get back to about 40-45% efficiency.

Over the last 2 years, he's been to the cardiologist every 6 months for a check up. They'd mentioned that sometimes people with this condition need to have a defibrillator implanted, but they weren't sure he'd need it. At the appointment 12 months ago, the doctor asked if he was taking his meds. At the time hubby was working one of those rotating shifts and as such was working nights. It's so hard for him to remember to take his medicines when his day is screwed up like that. However, about then work had decided to put everyone on permanent shifts (no more switching ... YAY!!!) and hubby put in for the morning shift... mostly because he prefers the days , as well as my insistence that I wanted him on a shift where it's easier to get help if he needs it. Yeah, the supreme night owl INSISTED he go and stay on days. So the dr wrote a note for him stating he HAS to be on a day shift. Period. This way if hubby didn't get the shift he wanted, we'd be certain he'd at least be on days. We decided at that appointment that we'd give it 6 more months on the meds now that there was a better chance he'd get them taken regularly.

At the appointment 6 months ago,  they'd seen some improvement, but not much. It was enough to give us hope. Fast forward to the appointment earlier this month...  it seems that his heart has plateaued and there isn't going to be any more improvement. So the discussion went from "Let's give it 6 more months and see what happens" to "I'm sorry, sir, but you are going to need to have an ICD (Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator) put in."  He's only 47.


We discussed the 2 different types. The newer models don't do as much as the older versions did, but they have the benefit of being less invasive (at least in my opinion). Why? Because the older versions require that a wire (a lead) is placed in the heart, where the newer models don't require that.  Hubby decided he wanted the newer model (even though that sucker rather large, at least 2-3 times the size of the older ones). So the dr set him up to get screened last week to see if he was going to be compatible. He's not.


Seems that when he gets turned and twisted in certain positions, the machine doesn't get the signals as it should. So he needs the more invasive one.

Anyhow, he has this 3hr + monster surgery tomorrow (Monday morning). Those that have known me for awhile know that I'm a nervous wreck right now. Stress is one of my migraine triggers. Any guess how many migraines I've had in the last week? Yep, you're right. Every bloody day. I half expect I'll have one later when I wake up, another all day on Monday, and more than likely another on Tuesday.

I'll try to be back in on Monday night to give an update. He'll be in the hospital overnight and with any luck, he'll be released on Tuesday morning or afternoon. We'll be staying in a hotel out near the hospital from Sunday to possibly Weds morning.  Should be home that evening. We have a family member coming in later today (Sunday) to help out, so we're set there. What we do need, however, is prayers, candle lightings, whatever you do.... it would be appreciated.

For those that know what he does for a living.... this means a good many of the machines he works on and fixes at work? Well he can no longer approach them. And those machines he CAN work on? Well if they're too close to one of the others, he won't be able to touch those either because it could mess with his implant. Basically, most of what he was HIRED to do... he can no longer do. Thank goodness the bosses at work seem to like him. The one has suggested getting him a minion to do that work. 



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