Name: Tony Hojnoski
Age at time of Dissection: 54
Type of Dissection: Both Ascending and Descending
Date of Aortic Dissection: 2 April 2016
Tell Us Your Story:

Iwas a 54 healthy active medication free, symptom free, male. I jogged into a rest room on a highway. Went to the bathroom, washed my hands and suddenly my jaw had severe pain that brought me to my knees. I made my way to our truck and my wife and had her drive me the hospital. The ride was ten to fifteen minutes. My symptoms spread from my jaw to my chest to my left leg.

My wife wheeled me into the ER. I was still conscious but the pain in my leg was becoming over whelming. I recall the triage portion of the ER but have no memories of the ER or scans that took place after that. i thank God for the experience of a couple of nurses who almost from the moment I arrived activated the Cardiac and Vascular surgical team. Within two hours I was out of the ER and in Surgery.

The Cardiac surgeon at my chest and the Vascular surgeon at my legs. 11 hours later, a mechanical Aortic valve, repair of the ascending Aortic tear, a new tube placed, Femoral bipass from my right leg to left leg and a Fasciotomy on my left shin. A long stay in ICU and then to Cardiac critical care. I Then 10 days in a rehab hospital moving from a wheel chair to walker to no aids. I was very weak but doing better every day until the 29th of April. Double vision and back to the hospital after suffering a TIA. It resolved without any residual effects.

I am grateful to be at home. A pile of pills every morning and night with a self administered shot in the belly. I just completed my first week of Cardiac rehab with out complications. I sometimes feel I am a star. The nurses and therapists keep saying “oh you’re the guy’. Its difficult to explain to people what happened to me. I am grateful to our fine local hospital, the nurses,doctors and all their supporting staff. I was lucky to have a quick diagnosis and even quicker surgery. I know with extended time it would have been unlikely that I would have survived.

I have always lived day to day but I cant help wondering what life will be like in the future? My ultrasounds still show dissections in my Carotid, Descending Aorta and Femoral arteries.