As some of you are aware I recently I suffered yet another health scare.

Unfortunately I went to our local hospital in January. I returned for similar problems a few months later. I became increasingly convinced that these Doctors had no idea what was happening. They were close to replacing my liver. I am of the opinion they didn’t have a clue what was wrong and jumped to completely inaccurate conclusions.

I am fortunate to have a GP Doctor I trust very much. He looked at me with concern and something I have never heard a Doctor say before. He said “I wish I was smart enough to figure out what is wrong, but I am not.”

He did have a suggestion, go to the Mayo Clinic.

I had been to Mayo many years ago for a knee surgery. It was for its time a revolutionary operation, and it turned out it didn’t work and I ended up having several knee replacements.

As we pulled up to Mayo I was amazed by the size of the place and the hundreds of people who were there to help us. We got to our appointment and the GI Doctor after five (Yes Five!!) minutes he declared the problem was not my liver at all, it was my heart. He looked at the data that local hospital gathered and noticed a very high pressure in one of my heart tests.

So, that means that the crack team of specialist near my home missed an obvious problem. I cannot tell you how upsetting this has been. I have lost all faith in this local hospital and their staff.

We had a whole series of tests done at Mayo and headed back home. Several things puzzled me. I was not eating, I felt sick after every meal, so it was easier not to eat. The problem, I was gaining weight at an alarming rate. Also, I was having problems breathing, after taking only a few steps I had to stop and rest.

We had another follow up and more tests at Mayo. Slowly they began to close in on their diagnoses. We went home that final weekend and I could not do anything. I felt dizzy and knew this was getting serious. We contacted the Doctor and he agreed to get us in ASAP. He spoke to us for a few minutes and got on the phone and got us into the Cardiac Care Unit. They began with the obligatory blood tests, and seemed alarmed. The Cardiac Dr. came in the room and said something like “Why didn’t you tell me you were a mess?” Your liver and kidneys are shutting down. They decided that I my heart problem was causing my body to drown in its own fluid. They gave me tons of diuretics, but they did not help. They then gave me 4 or 5 units of blood. Eventually the flood waters began, and as of today they haven’t stopped. I lost over forty pounds in the first week at the hospital, and to date I am close to fifty five pounds lost. The other welcome by product was I can breathe again!

The plan was once they got my numbers in line they were going to put a sensor into my heart, and confirm their diagnoses. One of the team of Docs dropped by and said she was concerned about the test. They had to punch a hole into my heart to test the other side, and with my history and ongoing issues they didn’t think it was wise to do so. I was told that it would require an additional open heart surgery to fix my faulty valve. She did however have an option. There is a very new treatment they wanted to try. As it turns out there was a new way to repair the valve. I clip had been devised that could stop the problems the valve was causing. No open heart surgery, just an incision in my leg and the clip can be installed. If this fails the heart operation is the only solution, but I am hopeful this will work.

I have to thank so many of you for your prayers and good thoughts. Biz and I really appreciated them.

My friends Tom and Maripat came and cut this huge tree from our backyard, I have no way to express my gratitude, and hopefully someday I can reciprocate!

All of our friends and neighbors that have helped in so many ways.

My GP Dr. Joe, you are the best.

The Mayo Clinic! I cannot recommend this place enough; the entire place is a model of efficiency and kindness. I truly was impressed.

My Mom and Dad, they were having their own issues, and still managed to check on me all the time.

Biz’s Mom Jerry, she is always there when we need her and I feel very lucky to have her in my life.

My Little boy Joey and his amazing wife Lizz, always had my back.

Oh yeah and what’s-her-name, my wife. If she was sick I would be a basket case, she is one of the strongest people I know. I love you very much Biz!

While this saga continues, I have hope for a full recovery!


Can you see why I love the man?  I love you Tony!

I have a couple of PSA announcements – only 10 days left to vote for my Pan Seared Pork Chops!

If you haven’t checked it out yet, I had a giveaway for some great canning products on Sundays post – winner will be posted on Saturday!