To my friends at SynCardia,
Monday, March 16, 2015
15 Years Later. February 22, 2000. Amazing February 22, 2015.
You can never be thankful or grateful enough to have received my second chance at life?
Every day I am driven to make a difference.
Many of our transplant friends and associates are no longer with us.
I'm only half way through my 30 years parts and labor warranty.
I am blessed.
To my friends and associates world wide a huge
"15 years later"
our U Tube video to celebrate my 15 years.
Hope you enjoy?
To my friends at SynCardia,
Syncardia 15 year celebration
multimedia-releases/heart- transplant-patient-celebrates- nearly-15-years-of-his-2nd- life-thanks-to-the-syncardia- total-artificial-heart/itemid- 1699.html
It's so hard to relive my journey but very grounding.
I can only shake my head trying to go back to Easter Sunday March 3, 1999.
My massive heart attack with two 100% blockages for seven hours.
My misadventures and journey had begun.17 hospital stays later, on September 13th 1999 as my heart was barely
able to pump,the lack of blood flow brought each organ to slow and fail.
That evening my heart was removed and
I was implanted with two lycra/plastic ventricles (picture below)my SynCardia Total Artificial heart.
The next three plus weeks I remained in a coma as my organs fought to restart, recover with increased blood flow from my bionic art. heart.
My trifecta wasCHF (congestive heart failure), pneumonia and a jaw infection.
Klebsiella an infection running through the hospital hit me next. Two Thoracotomies (cut between the ribs to clean out infection) 4 days apart for 7 hours plus each. Severe pain, existing on a morphine/demoral drip this atomic cockaroach survived. I needed seven blood transfusions before the first surgery to beef me up.
Then 8 IV's, 4 in each arm with space age antibiotics to attempt to kill the infection. And a chest tube to drain the mess out. First too small of a diameter kept clogging to a larger one that helped save my life.
One morning just after the nurses changed my bedding a young resident came to check my clogging chest tube. Next he took a scalpel made a new cut to my side and inserted a new bigger chest tube. No shot first just my blood on the new clean sheets. An interesting morning but helpful.
By now October became November. Still not healthy enough to be put on the transplant list.
Now the real battle began to get listed, walk, talk, write, eat become a human being again. Skills I relearned after coming out of the coma and now again after beating Impaemea.
Want to go to the Gym (Cardiac Rehab) Bill?
After a 9 minute workout I slept for two days.
A new beginning. I knew if I could get stronger I might escape with my life. Little by little I relearned living and went to the gym almost daily. My entourage, IV pole 400 pound Cardiowest, engineer, nurse, wheel chair.
In the gym they would plug my device into the ceiling for Electric and O2 to run my world.
I survived and advanced.
I got stronger and soon had the basic core values to make the Transplant list.
Hurry up and wait.
How do you learn to sleep, eat and train in a hospital tethered to a 400 lb box?
Time to learn:
Love, Patience, Tolerance and Understanding!
Plugged into the wall in a hospital you just might open your mind, learn and hopefully evolve!
Now, fifteen years later, several lifetimes to me!
Way beyond, thankful, grateful I am still driven to make a difference and help those behind me.
Thank God, my donor, donor family I am.
Happy Fifteen Bill.
Hopefully many more to come?