He made a big difference in the world. From the tip of Africa, and also had an impact on my life.
Can someone really make a difference in this world? I don’t mean small stuff, because I believe all of us can. I mean the really big stuff. Helping a person live longer, actually grabbing them from the clutches of death.
Breaking ground so that other people can follow and also save lives. This required courage and determination. Dr. Cristiaan Barnard of South Africa was the first person to do a human heart transplant.
This was not my first AFIB episode or cardioversion.
I feel it!
Many people have asked me how I know if my heart is out of rhythm. In my case, I feel it. In many of my previous episodes, I even know the precise moment it goes out.
In nearly all the cases I hope and pray that it’s Ectopic beats(I have written about them previously) but this year I’ve had 4 AFIB “attacks”. I call them attacks others call it an episode. Well, they attack me. My life changes immediately after I feel that beat go out.
I start thinking about my work, cycling, time in the hospital, “farm” work, church meetings, my wife, my life, children, and mother.
It changes everything I have planned for the next few days. Previously it was “sort of easy” because it was an easy in and out of the emergency room. But no! corona is here and now every man, child, dog, cat, chicken, and whatever must be tested.
Some of these questions may be: Why do you recommend this treatment? What about aftercare? Recovery time? What to expect when I see my baby after surgery? Support after surgery? Potential risks? Survival rate? Experience of the team? What can go wrong and how often do they? How are we included in the decision-making process? How long is the hospital stay? Do you share your results publicly? And a few other questions.
I have been seeing a cardiologist at least once a year for the past 20+ years. I still have questions.
Sometimes when I walk out of the consulting rooms I think “I should have asked …….” And then I feel so stupid. Although it’s long ago my mother has told me how many questions she had before and after my open-heart surgery. So what are some of the questions to ask before pediatric open-heart surgery?
What are the questions you should ask your AFIB doctor?
It is important to ask the right questions when you have those few moments with your AFIB doctor.
My problem was that I forgot the questions!
Sometimes I did make a list on a small piece of paper and fired away with all my questions. It helped me tremendously.
But that’s not all! The doctor asked me some questions that I was not sure off. Like what does my family heart history look like?
The questions on my “AFIB appointment” form are not the only questions you can ask or be asked, but it is a very good start. It will make you think. Then jot down how and why your AFIB starts (if there is any apparent reason or none).
A week ago I visited my cardiologist Dr Stephen Brown at Universitas Hospital in Bloemfontein, South Africa. I have two cardiologists – Dr Rosher monitors the rhythm of my heart and Dr Stephen Brown that monitors the physiological aspects of my heart. The reason why I make it a point to visit him or my other cardiologist at least once a year is twofold. The first reason is I want to make sure that my heart is still in sinus rhythm. It did happen to me previously (long ago with a visit to Dr Jordaan), my previous cardiologist, that I was out of rhythm, and his first words were “you’re heart is out of rhythm”. It came as a shock because I felt great and had no symptoms of AF. The thing was that my heart rate was kept down/slow by medication, and that made the symptoms of AF less obvious to me, but my heart was still out of sinus rhythm. So then I got the second shock, the cardioversion shock, and that put my heart back into sinus rhythm.