Procedure Update

Thanks you so much for praying for the procedure that was scheduled yesterday, an ablation which was to correct supraventricular tachycardia. Unfortunately, they were not able to perform the ablation – as my oldest son said, they did everything for the procedure but that.

Before they can do the ablation, they have to “map” the heart and then try to stimulate it into an SVT rhythm. They did a number of things to try to do that, but it never would convert over. That was the worst part of the day because I had to be awake for it, and it was quite uncomfortable. They did send it into fast heartbeats and irregularities, but not an SVT. They had to shock my heart to set it back to a right rhythm, but thankfully they put me to sleep for that. The doctor did see that the problems were in the atrium, not the ventricle, which is a whole different set of risk factors, procedures, and treatment options. He said we’ll discuss those next time I see him, which, unfortunately, isn’t for about a month.

As you can imagine, I was profoundly disappointed. In fact, when they wheeled me back to a room, I was a blubbering mess, and the lady helping me told my husband I would be emotional for a while. I’m sure that was mainly disappointment, but the pent-up emotion of the day probably contributed, and I can’t help but think that emotion might be an aftermath of all that happened in the OR as well.

We’re left with more questions than answers now, like why did all those ER EKGs for years show SVTs if the problem was in the atrium? Do I have both, or were those wrong? I was Googling atrial tachycardia last night and found several places that said it was a type of SVT, which I don’t quite understand if the tachycardia is in the atrium and SVTs are ventricular. I’m not sure why they couldn’t go ahead and deal with that while they were in there, but he did say it was a different kind of surgery where I would be sedated the whole time. He told my husband they don’t usually do that surgery unless there were 3 risk factors: being female, having diabetes, and having high blood pressure. Of those, I only have one risk – being female. So hopefully we’ll get more answers when we talk with the doctor. I’m trying to write down my questions between now and then.

After all of that I had to lay on my back in a hospital room for 4 hours to make sure the areas where they inserted the catheters into the blood vessels weren’t going to start bleeding again. I ended up not getting home until about 9 p.m.

There were a few really nice people we met along the way. After we parked the car in the hospital parking lot, an open shuttle was right there, the driver asking if we wanted a ride to the entrance and wishing us well when he dropped us off. The man who came to take me to the OR was kind and kept cracking jokes. You have to be careful about that because some people in that situation would not be in the mood, but he kept saying unexpected things that cracked me up. The man who wheeled me out to the car was very kind. Unfortunately, in the OR everyone talked over me and to each other (about recipes, sound systems, etc.) rather than to me except one lady who was in charge of the different things that were put into the IV, and she explained things to me, answered questions, kept asking how I was doing, offered to scratch my nose if needed since I wasn’t supposed to move. I wished I’d had a chance to tell her how much I appreciated all she did. But it was just another reminder that even the seemingly small jobs, like driving a shuttle or transporting a patient, can make a big difference in someone’s day if done kindly and graciously and thoughtfully.

As to my other “issues” I asked you to pray about, I didn’t have any low blood sugar issues even though I didn’t eat for about 10 hours. I consider that something of a miracle! I had an IBS flare-up on Saturday, but nothing Monday. God gave me such a calm, I was in awe. It could only have come from Him. I am so thankful for His grace and the prayers of His people.

Another thing that helped was reading Running Scared: Fear, Worry, and the God of Rest by Edward T. Welch, which I mentioned before. I had finished it on Friday and Saturday and spent some time Saturday and Sunday going through and jotting notes from the chapters, and then Monday before leaving I spent some time looking through the passages I highlighted. In some ways it was mostly nothing new, though there were a couple of new ways to think about a couple of things. But going over and over those Scriptural principles helped me take my thoughts captive and keep my focus on the Lord and not on all the other things that could cause alarm. I am looking forward to reviewing it hopefully in the next few days.

My wonderful daughter-in-law and son brought dinner over Sunday and then made dinner for Monday and Tuesday while at our house on Monday. They stayed til we got back Monday night. I received my first picture from Timothy. 🙂


I have a few little restrictions over the next couple of days but after that should be back to “normal.”

Thanks so much for your prayers, your care, your comments on my previous post about the surgery. They meant much more than you can know.

19 thoughts on “Procedure Update

  1. Thankful the Lord helped you through this and praying you will get answers to calm your heart at the next doctor appointment.

  2. Thank you for updating us & you will continue in our prayers. May our Dear Father answer you questions in His good time and way.

  3. Sorry to hear things were not “completed”. I’ll be praying that you get some answers and resolutions! 🙂
    God Bless!

  4. Barbara, I am so glad to see your update. I’ve been gone the majority of the day and am just now getting back in and wanted to check in to see how things went. I am sorry that the procedure could not be completed. Praying that you will get some answers when you see the doctor again in his office.


  5. I’m glad to read this update! I am so sorry this isn’t “done” now — I totally understand how you’d go into something like this, thinking it will all be over, then — BOOM, it’s not. I so wish I could take away the underlying anxiety that I can just imagine having. I also understand the stress that can come from then googling one’s issues and symptoms. Been there! I’ll continue praying for peace and for answers. You raise such a good point about us doing our jobs well, even small ones. We never know when God will use us. I’ve been in a similar place, in a medical situation when I am stressed to the max, and yet personnel in the room are talking about carry out. So frustrating! Rest up. I love the sweet drawing from your grandson!

  6. Ack. I’m so sorry all the preparation only lead to a detour in the end. We will keep praying that your next appointment will clear up questions and that the procedure will go as smoothly for you. Thank you for the update, Barbara. So good to hear that prayers were answered on many fronts.

  7. Oh,.Barbara! I’m so sorry you had to go through all that, especially being awake for some of it. That must have been so scary as well as uncomfortable. I’m praying that the reason behind you irregular heart rhythm can be found and corrected soon.

  8. Well that certainly turned out in a curious way. Hopefully your doctor will have some helpful answers when you see him.

    What a blessing to have a couple of folks at the hospital who “saw you.” I want to remember that as I go about my day to do the same – see others.

    Praying for healing and wisdom.

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  10. I remembered to pray for you as we were traveling to camp. I know the Lord is answering prayer in maybe a different way than we anticipated. I am thankful you had peace and no bad reactions beforehand. That’s a blessing! Praying that you get definitive answers to your issues. (((Hugs)))

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  12. Barbara, I can totally get why you would be very emotional afterwards. So glad there were good people all along the way but sorry about those that talked over you in the OR. The same happened with me with my hand surgery for which I was awake. Did I really need to hear that the doc was tired from driving all day the day before with sick kids? Don’t they realize that that would scare me and shake my confidence in him? Anyway, praying that they get it all figured out for you!

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