Name: Rodneylee Vogt
Age at time of Dissection: 41
Type of Dissection: Both Ascending and Descending
Date of Aortic Dissection: 16 December 2012
Tell Us Your Story:

What began as a relaxing day hanging out with a friend turned into a nightmare. It was a cold December Sunday in Omaha, Nebraska. I had spent the day at a friend’s apartment watching movies and playing video games. I had walked out to my car to go home when I sat in the driver’s seat and immediately felt the worst pain of my life in my chest, upper back, and lower back. Something was horribly wrong!

I pulled out my cell phone and called my friend to have her come out and walk back inside with me just in case I passed out. I managed to walk back to her apartment, (about 100 feet) before collapsing onto her bed. After telling her to call 911 I lay there suffering for what seemed an eternity but in reality was a scant 15 minutes before the squad arrived. By this time my right leg was completely numb from hip to toe.

On arrival the paramedics gave me a half dose of Morphine that did nothing for the pain. with their help I was moved to the gurney and rushed to the waiting squad. Once there I was given the other half of the Morphine which thankfully blocked my memory of the next 5 days.

I awoke in the hospital honestly believing that I was having a bad dream and was laying comfortably in my own bed. The next day was more of the same. On the morning of my 7th day in the hospital something in my eyes told my nurse that I was aware which prompted him to tell me in great detail what had happened to me.

I learned that my entire Aorta from the Aortic valve to the split of my kidneys had dissected and that a large section of my aortic arch had ruptured. The surgeons had replaced the ruptured section as well as the Aortic valve.

I spent a total of 12 days in the hospital and another 14 at my father’s house recovering before beginning 6 weeks of cardiac rehab. It has now been almost 4 months and I’m back to work and getting stronger every day.

I would love to hear from other survivors. I believe we all have a story to tell that can help save lives.
I’m alive! After that what else matters?