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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone,

It has been a very long time since I have been on. I hope you are all doing well. I have a question/concern and I am not sure where to even post this?

My rheumy sent me for a brain MRI and an ultra sound of the carotid arteries. Well the ultra sound came back that my left carotid artery has a 60-69% blockage. I am so scared. My brother died from a stroke at age 41, my dad had several mini strokes, my grandma died from a stroke. So I am at a very high risk here. I am going to the cardio specialist group on Thursday and from there they will send me to a cardiovascular surgeon. :worried:

My concern- Is there anything someone with lupus or sjogren's should be concerned about with this type of surgery? (surgery to remove the blockage in the left carotid artery) Are there questions I need to be asking or things I need to tell them? What about recovery? I hear that I will probably be in ICU for a couple days. Does lupus or sjogren's have an impact on surgeries or recovery? I am soooo scared and afraid.

You all have been so wonderful in the past here and I hope you are all doing well.
Thank you in advance for any help you can give!
Janice
 

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Nana
Sorry to hear about your problem.
My wife has not had surgery on her artery so I can not speak specific to that but she has had heart problems several times and has had a port put direct into the artery when she was in the hospital so they could get medication dorect to the heart.

At any time she has had something of this nature the main things tehy were concerned with was just the fact that she had Lupus and what medications she was on.
At times they have had to adjust or stop a medication for awhile because of how it could cause problems with a procedure she had going on.

Also of particular concern for her was medications she has problems with and can not take.

I would talk to the Doctors and try and get as much information about what type of surgery they plan and what it involves.
With many today they have ways of doing it that are not as invasive as they were in the past.
Many times a couple of days in ICU after a suregry like this is just so that they can monitor around the clock and give the patient a couple of days in a room alone so they can sleep more with out the constant in a normal room.

In ICU they are setup so they can monitor a patient around the clock and can see all stats all of the time from the desk.
In addition in ICU they are normally not as under staffed as many hospitals are in normal wards.
And the nurses are closer so they can pay more attention and be more responsive to your needs then in a normal ward.
 

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hi there

I have had stents in vaious arteries since I was in my 30s when it was discovered I had some blockages. With me, they didn't unblock them, they just put a stent in them to keep them over (and that included that if anything dislodged it would have gone straight to my brainstem).

Are you definitely having surgery, or are they going to be able to stent it ? If so, this is just done via arteriogram. But sometimes it isn't suitable for stenting, in which case they have to put in a bypass.

Have they definitely said they will try to unblock it rather than do a bypass ? I would be a little concerned about someone trying to unblock it in case some of the 'stuff' got loose and headed upstairs.

The other way to look at this is that although this is very scarey, you are very lucky to have found out about it before you stroked out. I have a cerebral aneurysm - my sister never knew she had one and her's killed her. So I am very lucky to know that mine is there so it can be monitored.

best of luck with it all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
reb200,

Thank you so much for your reply. It was very comforting. Thanks! I guess if I have to be in the hospital ICU would be a good place to be looked after. I will find out more tomorrow and the next few days as to what I am facing.
Thank you again!



Raglet,

Thank you for your reply also. I am not 100% sure what action they are going to take. The best thing would be medication although I doubt I will be that fortunate. I have heard of doing the stent but I don't think it is as common when they are working with the left artery in the neck. I know they are doing it more but not every surgeon will do it. It would be a lot less invasive to go that route. The other option would be going in thru the side of the neck and clearing the blockage that way. :worried:

I will know more tomorrow and in the next few days at to what I am doing. I am so thankful they found it! Unfortunately like your sister, my brother wasn't so fortunate either.

Thanks again for your reply.

Worried in northwest Indiana,
Janice
PS: anyone out there know any good cardiovascular doctors in the northwest Indiana/Chicago area?
 

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hi there

these days they are even placing stents in brains, though it does depend where you are treated. They have developed new stents that they can put just about anywhere, though it is a while since I read up on this stuff. I was all set to have a graft put in between my carotid and my subclavian, but at the last minute I compensated and didn't need it. Phew.

best of luck with it all - with stuff like that going on, I always just want to get it over and done with as fast as possible.

cheers

raglet
 

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Hello Janice

I hope all goes well. I suppose we have to be glad that they have these clever procedures nowadays, but of course it is worrying. Just bear in mind that they can do wonders and there's no reason why you shouldn't benefit
Keep in touch and let us know what they say.

Many hugs
Clare
 

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Best of luck to you and I hope everything goes very smoothly.

I'm hoping you can tell me why they ended up checking your carotid arteries to begin with though. Were you have some symptoms or was it due to the family history and age/lupus? This is the one test my mom is interested in getting run for her due to her side of the family's history of stroke causing death in middle/old age. She's thinking the doctor won't want to do the test though if she asks!
 

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Dear Janice :hug:

Im sorry you have this worry on top of everything else. I hope things go as smoothly as possible for you and that you get the procedure done asap. The waiting and worrying is the worst :hugbetter:

Let us know how you get on. Thinking of you.

Luv n stuff
Joan:rose:
 

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(((((((((Janice)))))))) I'm thinking of you too :hug: Stay strong and all the best, just as well they discovered it :blink: :yes:

:luck:

love
Lily
 
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