Remember that operation I was supposed to have today? We cancelled the reservation and sent the band home. I had a substitute procedure instead.
My stress test hinted at a blockage in an artery. An angiogram is how you find out.
Be here at 12:30 they said. I was ushered in somewhere around 2:00. It didn’t take long to see there was a blockage.
I know. I watched. The whole process is done in ‘twilight’ under the influence of Fentanyl.
At this point the angiogram becomes angioplasty.
An angioplasty is pretty simple. A tube is inserted in your wrist then snaked toward the heart. At the site of the narrowing a balloon is inflated then a stent (a small mesh tube) put in place. A stent acts like the bracing construction crews use in trenches. It keeps the sides from moving in.
OK — maybe not that simple.
An angioplasty also requires a night in the hospital. I went in feeling perfect. I fell asleep with IVs in both hands, an oxygen sensor taped to my finger, EKG probes and a splint holding my right wrist rigid.
It was a night full of guest appearances. Nurses and aides came and went. A little blood. A few blood pressure checks. At one point a scale was wheeled in! I was weighed at 4:00 am.
My cardiologist came to check on me (and her work) this morning. She is of Indian descent, but definitely raised here. Think of Michael Douglas’ attorney in the movie “Disclosure.”
Next came an internist. I think he’s the hospital’s guy for people like me. He walked in the room already knowing I’d be going home. He reread the cardiologist’s instructions to me.
So, here I am, back home. I’m already on a new pill and rescheduled for my Whipple, September 27.
Tonight Cousins Michael, Melissa and Max came by. My sister and brother-in-law are in from Milwaukee. Our daughter came down from Hollywood.
Helaine put out an amazing spread of cold cuts and deli goodies. Family and food. It was wonderful. I wish it was for a better reason.