The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports


September 21, 2013

As Time Goes By: A shocking story about defibrillator replacement

I can’t recall if I told you I have a pacemaker and a defibrillator installed in my chest. I mention this because without the defibrillator I would not be writing this. It saved my life three times so far, so I was concerned when, in one of my semi-annual checkups, I was told that the battery was starting to die out.

Previously I had been told that I could be reasonably sure that the wiring that I had was “the good kind” and not some of that imported “junk” that flooded the market at the time. This was reassuring to me because I had become slightly leery of things labeled “Made in China.”

So when I was told that my batteries were getting old, I was curious and asked if there was any warning before the electricity was turned off. I was told that I would get a vibrating sensation in my heart. That left me with one more question: “How long after the vibrations start do I have before I croak?”

The day of my operation arrived and away I went to get the latest life-saving model.

I was very reassured to see the same gang in the operating room that was there five years ago when my first combo pacemaker/defibrillator was installed. I didn’t bother to go through my repertoire of jokes, as they told me they had heard them all before.

Everything went well. I am fully wired and ready to go for another 30,000 miles. The best part of this story was post-operative.

I lay around for a while in my recovery booth while they searched for an empty bed. Apparently this hospital was a popular place for “weekenders.”

I was told that a room was available but that I would have a roommate and to remember that it was just for overnight.

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