Recent Medical Heart Activity
In recent months I had a few nights of chest tightness in my medical heart resolved by nitroglycerin pills and even spent Christmas Day in JFK hospital near our home. I visited my cardiologist and she scheduled a stress test for me that took place this past Thursday (April 6, 2017). The normal EKG reports did not show enough. The way to discover the issues was to put the heart in stress and take MRI pictures before and after the stress.
During the stress test, the EKG needles began bouncing around bringing in a second cardiologist to observe. As I completed 7 minutes on the treadmill, my chest began tightening. I was laid on a bed and given two rounds of nitroglycerin pills which provided relief. The after pictures showed distress to the heart.
So I was taken to the ER and later admitted to the hospital (VA-West Palm Beach). A heart catheterization was scheduled for Friday morning. During that procedure the cardiologists confirmed that all of my stents were clogged and two of my bypass grafts were not functioning. However the one main graft was doing a superb job. In fact, the cardiologists marveled at the handiwork of my surgeon from four years ago. The imaging also showed that my heart has created several corollary vessels to aid in getting blood to the clogged areas.
With no good place to put any stents and not wanting to do another bypass for one more graft, the doctors have recommended medical treatment. I am fine with that.
For those of you without a scorecard, here is the condition of my heart by the numbers. All of this has happened since the summer of 2011 when I was 51 years old.
- 4 Heart Attacks
- 1 Cardiac Bypass Surgery
- 4 Cardiac Bypass Grafts – two of which are still functioning
- 8 Stents that no longer function
- 5 Stress Tests that have resulted in hospitalization
- 9 Heart Catheterization procedures
The Lord has provided me with an ever growing team of cardiologists and other health care providers for my benefit. For this I am immensely grateful.
I won’t be participating in any athletic events, but the Lord has given me a very good life with my wife and family. I am also blessed by very good brothers and sisters in the Lord and many dear friends.
Lesson #1 – Although I no longer am able to do many things I could previously, the Lord has provided a wonderful sense of contentment rooted in the Lord Jesus.
Lesson #2 – I have learned a depth of intimacy with the Lord through prayer and the Bible.
Lesson #3 – I have learned a brand new type of intimacy with my wife. It is a heart to heart intimacy.
Lesson #4 – I find greater joy than I ever have in teaching and preaching from God’s Word.
Lesson #5 – The Lord provides unusual strength for the task of teaching and preaching. After all I am a Southern Baptist and expounding the Scriptures takes a level of energy beyond my regular activities.
Lesson #6 – Even with the problems to my medical heart, they are nothing compared to the disease of my spiritual heart. Thankfully I have a God who gives new spiritual hearts and works to mold it into shape.