Saturday, June 9, 2007

Visit to the hospital

Today, my Mom, Rachel, Sammy, Patrick, and I went to Tacoma General hospital to visit my dad, who had just undergone surgery. Earlier this week, my dad went in for a vascular health checkup after he found he had a high blood pressure. He had been feeling chest pains after his work outs and a resulting loss in his ulnar nerve, which he believed to be caused by work-related stress.

The tests revealed that two of the main arteries were blocked and he had constricted blood flow to the heart, so today he had stints put into those arteries to allow better blood flow. Stints basically are a cylindrical wire mesh inserted into the artery to widen the passageway.

After the surgery, he was calm and cordial as he usually is. Photographs of the artery before and after show that the procedure opened up the arteries and blockage was reduced considerably. The blood pressure readings on the heart monitor showed normal readings, which just that morning had been much higher. "It feels noticeably different having lower blood pressure," he mentioned. He seemed lively, and posed with his grand-children as Rachel and I incessantly took photographs.

His blood pressure will be monitored over the next few days, and continued high blood pressure might indicate something more serious. As for now, we're thanking God the surgery went well and look forward to seing him back in shape for some future camping trips this year.