Still oinking…

Next Monday, my pig sourced replacement aortic heart valve will have been working three years in my ticker.

All seems to be going well with regular checkups and EKGs showing it’s doing its job. Seems like I’m a little short on breath on some occasions when hiking in higher altitudes, but I think that just has to do with the fact that I’m not the spring chicken I once was. Margo and I try to walk some every day, hopefully at least two-plus miles. I don’t get winded on those journeys along the irrigation ditches as I did three and one-half years ago.

It’s still amazing to me that I did as well as I did for many years with a heart valve with just two instead of three flaps. I did a lot of skiing, running, playing football, playing rugby, biking, fly fishing and hiking up until I started feeling something was wrong in 2019.

I’m told by a friend who had a similar heart valve replacement that the procedure has become much simpler these days. Instead of cracking my chest open, pulling my heart out and keeping me alive with an artificial pump while the replacement valve was sewn in, it’s simply done now with tiny medical instruments that go up a big blood vessel in your leg. I’m told that my piggy sourced replacement valve does have a shelf life and will have to be replaced at some time in the future, unless the good Lord has decided that I’ve done enough damage on earth and relocates me somewhere else before then.

Anyway, thanks to all of you who remain supportive in my adventure, and I’m enclosing a cartoon from last month’s Albuquerque Journal about my procedure which made me chuckle. And a special thanks to Mongo.

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