Cardiac Bits for January 14, 2008

I don’t know if this will be a regular series or not, but I wanted to follow up on my earlier post about my heart issue.

Nuther day, nuther tube, nuther night in the hospital.  I went back to the hospital on Friday for another catheterization.   The doctor inserted a new stent to open another blockage he found in my heart, which meant another night in the hospital.  That makes 3 steel tubes in my heart.  Pretty wild.

Pumping and pumping and pumping and… As I mentioned in Nitroglycerin Man, you’re fully awake while a tube is run through your groin and up into your heart during the catheterization procedure, and since this was my second time around within the span of a week I made an effort to observe everything that was going on.  The best way to do that, other than watching the doctors’ faces and listening to their conversation, was paying strict attention to the monitors my doctors were looking at while they were performing the procedure.  Watching the monitor of my heart pumping it seemed to me that the heart is a violent muscle, pumping with a huge amount of energy on every beat.  To think it performs that contraction 60 times a minute every day and every night is incredible.

Insurance.  I shared a hospital room with a good guy from Montpelier, the state capital of Vermont and about 45 minutes south on I-89.  He worked in an automotive body shop and had no health insurance.  No personal physician. He was single, in his mid-40’s, and lived with his mom.  His heart was pumping out about 30% of the blood it was supposed to.  The good news is that medicine should fix him up over time.   The bad news is that he had no health insurance.  I counted my blessings of not having to worry about paying for my hospital bills over the last couple of weeks. 

It’s about the diet, stupid. A very best pal from Pittsburgh emailed me asking if I could continue to support Magic Hat if I reduced my allegiance to Price Chopper donuts.  He’s absolutely right, as when it comes to donuts verses alcohol, alcohol wins.  But diet is huge, and nothing is more challenging after being faced with a heart issue than making changes in diet that reduce sodium intake, cholesterol, triglycerides, and other cardiac nasties.  If I continue to blog about any cardiac-related issue, it will most likely be about how to maintain a healthy diet.  It’s a fascinating topic, particularly when you are suddenly faced with the need to maintain one to live another day.


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A long time developer, I was an early adopter of Linux in the mid-90's for a few years until I entered corporate environments and worked with Microsoft technologies like ASP, then .NET. In 2008 I released Sueetie, an Online Community Platform built in .NET. In late 2012 I returned to my Linux roots and locked in on Java development. Much of my work is available on GitHub.