The 1993 winter came with an ominous bode for me. I got struck with virus Flu, which cause enlargement of my heart. To add to my woes, I gained 55 pounds of weight in three months owing to retention of fluid. Not only sweat and coldness felt bad but I experienced tightness in the chest while at work. Worst of it, one day at 6 PM, severe pain forced me to bend on my knees. The boss in the office asked me to take rest for sometime and advised me to take a walk to the store for medical help. However, I continued the work till noon in pain and went to the clinic only after that.
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The pain persisted. The doctor wanted to know if I was driving, which really I had been doing. He advised me not to have any more of driving, as it would be hazardous. I was later sent to the hospital for tests. I met a cardiologist in the hospital and told him all about the pain I suffered from. After close examination, the doctor said that I need a heart transplant. The inevitable had rung its bell but I put up a bold face. Immediately, I talked with my Insurance Company and chose Atlanta Emory hospital and the transplant of heart to be conducted by two eminent heart surgeons Dr. Smith and Dr. Kentor.
Two months after all the tests were done, I was put on the transplant list on the 7th of July 1994. I was given a pager and an ambulance to stand by Jet in Panama City, FL where I lived with my parents. A couple of false alarms in the pager made me fly for checkup with my dad in the month of September. The tests said that the pressure in my heart had dropped alarmingly and I was not in a position to take the return flight home. I had, therefore, to be kept in I.C.U for 8 weeks till November 1, 1994. I got the message on that fateful Halloween night that I would be shifted to O.R at 2:30 AM for the impending transplant of heart and would be put on the Heart Lung Bypass Machine around 4:30 AM. The message also read that I would recover by 7:30. Everything went well and the transplant operation was successful. However, I remember nothing what had happened the next day. However, the chest tube was taken out the day following i.e., on Wednesday and I was sitting up in a chair eating my lunch. I was kept under supervision in the hospital for seven days and then released. I left the hospital with a new heart and a pace maker to regulate it. It is 15 years now and I am proud to tell you that my heart works with excellent efficiency.
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