7/10/11 Mayo for another look

On Friday, July 7th, Kathy, Jake and I headed down to Phoenix for a consult with Dr. Stone in the Vascular Department Specialty Clinic at Mayo.  Specifically, we visited the venous malformation clinic.  You see, after 8 attempts to keep my veins open and finding the left jugular clogged yet again, we felt it might be time to get another opinion on how to proceed.

We went to Mayo for several reasons:
1) Each CCSVI procedure provided relief in numerous areas
2) Mayo Clinic is becoming more and more open to the CCSVI theory
3) I'm already a well established patient at Mayo
4) Second opinion is a prudent thing, especially when complications keep arising

Let's be clear.  Dr. Arata at Pacific Interventional/Synergy is a great doctor and I am forever grateful to him for all he has done for me.  He first diagnosed my stenosed veins, he opened them the first time giving me a real sense of liberation, and he agreed to keep working with me despite his busy practice doing this for many other people.  He's squeezed me in on short notice, answered my emails, taken my calls, and diligently performed the surgeries, each of which had results.  I just need another set of eyes and brains to help get through the repeated complications of a repeated, chronic thrombosis of the left internal jugular, and I can't think of many places better to go than the Mayo Clinic.  I will remain in touch with Dr. Arata when we decide what to do at Mayo.

Kathy made the call for me earlier this week and we got an appointment for 1:00 on Friday.  As is always the case with Mayo Clinic, they always let you know of changes in schedule, and we got a call Thursday to change the appointment to Friday at 2:00 because Dr. Stone would be in a surgery and they wanted to be sure he would be out and ready to meet.  Appointments at Mayo Clinic are sacred, and they  actually value a patient's time, unlike many doctors in Las Vegas and other cities who cram as many patients in as possible and could give a rip if you have to wait.

We met with Dr. Stone, a vascular surgeon.  When he came into the room, he already had reviewed my whole case, reviewed the CD's that had been uploaded into their system from my last visit in April, and started asking me questions.  In a 30 minute consult, we had some direction.  Dr. Stone was highly complimentary of Dr. Arata's work as he viewed all the films of my previous angioplasties.

After some discussion, Dr. Stone came up with two solutions.  The first was to add a lined stent inside the existing one, and have it done the same way as the previous interventional procedures.  A lined stent may allow the endothelium to build up without clotting.  The second solution was to do a vein graft from one out of my leg and parallel it into the superior vena cava.  This method is considerably more radical, and will require a 6 hour operation with a week of recovery.

We opted for the lined stent first, and if that fails, go to the graft.  Dr. Stone said he would do some research and consult with his colleagues, and call me this week for scheduling and/or further discussion.  We will also see the Mayo hemotologist for a second possibility that something in my blood is causing the clotting.  We agreed this ws less likely given the right and azygos have never clotted since the first procedure back in October.

After the appointment, we checked into the hotel, had a nice dinner, and felt once again hopeful and optimistic that we might get all my veins open for maximum opportunity to recover.

1 comment:

Andrea said...

Hi there
I just happened to stumbled on your blog while trying to find places in the US or Canada that now perform the liberation operation. My husband has been treated once in Bulgaria and had the Liberation Operation in 2010, however after a recent doppler exam they have found his left jugular has closed up again. We are looking into have a second procedure completed. I am wondering how you like the Mayo clinic and any info you could provide would be greatly appreciated!