Iliterally almost cried when I found this site. I thought I was just a tiny number in the world of statistics. Though, it seems I am alone no longer. I am so thankful for this site, it has given me hope in planning for a family that I may live long enough to have children and watch them grow old!!

My name is Andrew, I was 26 years old sitting in my office getting ready for a conference call when I felt a burp sensation in my chest. My blood pressure dropped and I almost passed out. The initial tear was massive enough to cause a severe drop. I gathered myself immediately and got myself on the floor in the cardiac position. I told my coworkers to 1)call my parents so I could say good bye and 2)to call 911.

The pain began instantly as my aorta continued to dissect, beginning proximal to the aortic valve dismally up past my aortic arch and partially to my brachiocephalic and common carotid arteries. By the time the end got there, I was seized in pain. The end crew assumed I was having a panic attack and asked me to “can you just get up and walk down the stairs for us?” My feet were off the ground and my hands were crumpled from the seizing. I could barely speak but I got out “are you effing kidding me?”

At the ER I begged for a CT scan between the agony and I waited for 3 hours. Eventually I “bothered other patients” enough they decided to listen to me. Radiology didn’t wait for the ER doctor. Life flight was there in ten minutes.

I was trying to smile and joke with everyone and pass off the seriousness of the situation. It was not taken as well as I had hoped.

I had a full out of body experience on the helicopter though my vitals were bad but stable and I was reportedly conscious the entire time. The experience was quite peaceful.
Has anyone else had this experience?

They landed and they ran to wheel mento the OR no prep and no time to joke about them fixing me up once I saw the bypass machine. I asked them to video tape and they said no then they knocked me out.

I woke up about 26 hours later after a 10 and a half hour surgery, they used deep hypothermia (42degrees) for about 4-6 hours. They induced cerebral silence for 29 minutes and I was completely off the machine for that time. I was ready to leave the hospital 5 days later and I have been wondering how long it will be before I see my grandmother again. We spoke when i was under, I have full confidence that I was gone from this place for some time during everything.

The feeling was quite peaceful again. How can it be my brain if I was turned off? Chemical reactions when there were none going on? I can’t explain these things or why they happened. The doctors could not figure out why this happened, neg marfans, neg connective tissue disorder.

Than you everyone for sharing your stories, I appreciate reading all of them!! It has given me hope for a long life. I GIVE CREDIT TO DR. Chadwick Stouffer and his team at East Tennessee Cardiovacular Surgery Group. They are excellent people. And I was lucky they were available that day, I was told that there is no explanation for me being alive by the time they got me help, except for being fit.