Name: Carmen Mosley Barbolla
Age at time of Dissection: 45
Type of Dissection: Descending
Date of Aortic Dissection: 9 February 2012
Tell Us Your Story:

Hi everyone. My name is Carmen and I am the wife of an aortic dissection patient. As I write this, at 2:52am, I am sitting in the waiting room at the Heart Hospital in Albuquerque, NM as my husband, Andrew, is in the operating room having an aortic dissection repair. He’s 45 (I’m 27), in spectacular health, an avid surfer and snowboarder and one of the most vibrant people I know. The journey to his aortic dissection diagnosis was only 24 hours.

Yesterday afternoon, in the middle of nowhere and while we were out running errands, he suddenly didn’t feel well and was hit was dull chest pain, incredible back pain and discomfort, and dizziness. Initially we thought he blood sugar was low so we gave him some food, and he started to feel a little bit. As the night progressed, he got better but was still feeling off. We decided that it would be best that he call his doctor the next morning (today) just to be cautious. Based on his symptoms we were thinking heart attack, angina, etc.

His doctor sent him straight to the ER where after a CT Scan of his chest they spotted the dissection. Immediately they began preparations for him to have the dissection repair surgery. It has been such a whirlwind of events and emotions. While I know he is in good hands here at the Heart Hospital with a team of doctors who have done more surgeries of this type than anyone else in the state, I know it is such a risky surgery.

As a newlyweds (we’ve only been married 1 1/2 years), I look forward to years and years together with him, starting a family and living happily ever after. All of a sudden, that life was in jeopardy. As transplants from San Diego, CA to Albuquerque, NM, I sit in this waiting room alone, no family to soothe and comfort me. It is with great relief that I find this support group and sharing our story and putting my thoughts into this virtual world is incredibly comforting and therapeutic. To the strangers out there that are living with and surviving from aortic dissection, all the best for a long and fulfilling life.

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