Patricia Peterson

Personal Stories: Patricia Peterson

Hi Brian:  I’ve been trying to drop you an e-mail for quite sometime and finally got up the nerve to do it.  I had my aortic dissection on  Dec. 2lst and 22nd.  They started on the 21st and after about 10 hrs, it was done.  My vascular surgeon told me he flat lined me twice, and I made it back and we got through it.  I don’t remember too much except after the worst of it and the start.  I had a very excruciating pain shoot through my jaw and down to my chest and around to my back, and I don’t think I will ever  forget it.

I was down in Mesa, AZ and I was a patient of Advanced Cardiac Specialists and had been under Dr. Z. Yilma’s care for a few years.  I have a sent and in 3 months it plugged and I had to have angioplasty to clean it out.  I am still so tired that some days I don’t know what to think.  I know they told me it would take about a year to recover.  I am still hoping I will get stronger and feel like kicking up my heels.  I have grafts from the surgery, three of them, and they are called prosthetic (gore tag).  I think I have this right, I was in Boise, Idaho last week and they told me they do not do this surgery there yet.

I live in La Grande, Oregon and had been here, I would not have made it.  You need to be diagnosed almost immediately and so that was good, but I understand they have not  been doing this type of surgery for very long and don’t know how long it will last.  I would kind of like to know what the prognosis is for this kind of surgery.  Can you let me know how yours happened and how it was and is?   I live in La Grande, Oregon and go to Apache Junction, AZ for the winter.  I am 72 yrs. old now, and female.  Please send me back an E-Mail as soon as you can conveniently do so.  Where do you live and where did you have your surgery? I had open heart surgery, my ribs sawed into and the whole bit and had a lot of work on the left side up high it starts in my neck and goes down where the ribs separate at the stomach area.  Then I have a 4-6 inch scar in my groin where they did something.

I know a nerve got cut there as my left thigh on my leg is numb on the outside, the inside seems okay, but everything that bugs me is  on my left side. The carotid on my left side got narrowed and is at 50% now.  I am extremely fortunate to be alive and walking and talking and I thank my Lord.  He evidently wasn’t through working on me!  I can’t think of much more right now, but I know I will, so I am anxiously waiting for your response.

Thank you for reading this,

Pat Peterson.


Chris Jones-26


Eric M Green-48

1 Comment

  1. Susan Kaspersen

    Hello Patricia,

    I just found this website, and your story. Since I am female, 68, I was looking for female stories. Not nearly as many as with men.

    I had an Aortic Dissection type B on June 18th of 2014. Since I had cervical spine surgery just two years before this I assumed that something had gone wrong with that. The pain was like lightening had struck my spine, and I was literally unable to move for several minutes. I was just standing up from a sitting position when it hit. My head was pulled back, and my hands distorted into a claw position. Very slowly I hobbled into where my husband was napping. I didn’t want to wake him, still thinking it was my back. After about an hour of sobbing and horrible pain, I woke him and told him what was going on. Despite his ranting I refused to go to the hospital.
    I called my son and asked if he had any prescription pain med I could have a couple of. He rushed right over and gave me something. I don’t even know what it was.
    By this time my arms and legs were feeling weak. Despite all this I refused to go to the hospital for two long days! Finally my husband put me in the car and took me. When I got there they had me diagnosed within 1/2 hour, and being transported by ambulance to a larger hospital with a better Cardiac Care Center.
    Several doctors and cardiologists surrounded me in the EL when we got there, and one cardiologist leaned down to me and said ” You are a very lucky girl.”
    I was in the Cardiac Intensive Care unit for ten days. My Dissection extended from just below the aortic arch all the way to my right Kidney, causing great concern. A vascular surgeon was brought in and was evaluating hour by hour whether or not to operate on my Kidney.
    bottom line, I’m still here, doing relatively well. I’m on several different medications for blood pressure, an anti depressant, a tranquilizer, pain reliever for my back, and I take a few vitamin supplements. My right Kidney is still going downhill, every three months the tests are done, and the kidney gets a little worse. But I figure a person can live with one kidney.
    The blood pressure meds were and are very hard to get used to. I’m very tired all the time, and I’ve fainted a few times from standing up too quickly.
    My family doctor at the time was stressing me out so badly because she didn’t understand the need for all the meds. I left her and found a wonderfully smart family doctor who knows that keeping your stress down is the key to keeping your blood pressure down.
    I’m so glad to hear that you came through your surgery well. I’m not a religious person, but I will send you good vibes. I credit my wonderful doctors, for pulling me through this, and my wonderful husband for all his love and support.

    Take care, and I hope all continues to go well for you.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén