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Aorta Replacement Surgery
I am a 45 year old male. I suffered a Type ll Aortic Dissection in June 05. Luckily I was admitted to an ER immediately and was treated medically with beta blockers and such. I was told recently after a regularly scheduled MRA that the tear is getting larger and I need to have surgery to replace most of my decending Aorta with a man made Aorta. I have not had my consult with the surgeon yet, so these questions may sound silly.

Is this a relatively safe procedure? Is it fairly common, or should I prepare for the worst?
Is the incision small or will the chest cavity need to be opened as in open heart surgery?
How long is re-couperation?
Will I still be on beta blockers after the surgery, as I am now?
What are the long term prognosis?

Any helpful suggestions or information appreciated.
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I have had open heart surgery 2X times for aortic valve. First surgery was in 1988. I m 100% fit and people around me can't observe that I m heart patient. I have metalic valve. Consult your cardiologist and act upon as advised.
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336017_tn?1263582857
I just had aortic valve replcement on Oct 12th. Your 45, don't smoke? In good shape, you should do fine. my scar is about 8 inches, Yes, they do open you up. you will be on blood thinners the rest of your life if you go with a machanical valve. I'm what, 7 weeks after, and I feel OK.
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It's good know both of you are doing well. However, in my situation, the valve is not the issue. In my case, a large portion of the aorta is being removed and replaced by an artifical aorta.
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