My wife and I returned home last evening after a rather traumatic week at Harefield. Her medical condition has further deteriorated during this time and she cannot now walk very far without stopping often to rest.
She did not have the planned heart surgery because scans discovered she has a partial blockage in her left carotid artery where it branches off to the brain. News of this left my poor wife rather devastated as you can imagine and decidedly increased her apprehensive fears. Thankfully though, a further MRI scan showed the blockage had not progressed too far up the carotid to be untreatable, but it must be cleared before the main heart surgery can be attempted.
There is a 3% risk factor of a stroke during most heart surgery, which can occur when the blood pressure is lowered, but in my wife's present condition it would rise to 10 - 15%. Harefield would not undertake her surgery with this increased risk factor, so she has been sent home for about two weeks until another specialist surgeon from another hospital can add her to his list. We then return to Harefield and my wife will have both operations hopefully on the following day.
The galling thing about this whole business is that our own local hospital scan department report stated she was okay for bypass surgery! This report was a major factor in sending us to Harefield in the first place and resulted in considerable NHS costs expended, to some extent needlessly.
It is to the credit of Pat's great team at Harefield that they fully read our surgeon's report. He had felt a slight carotid swelling in the neck which prompted Harefield to follow this up for themselves. Without this dedication, the operation could have gone ahead with possible consequences that don't bear thinking about. Matters at our hospital are being investigated with my daughter determined to find what went wrong. As she holds a responsible position there, she can occasionally go where others might fear to tread!!
Sorry it's not good news as yet folks, but hopefully it will come by the end of the month now. Thanks again everyone for being so kind. TC.