Heard from Cleveland Clinic today. It was a mixture of good and bad news. They reviewed my records and the good news is that my mitral valve is going to be repaired and not replaced. Since they have a very high success rate in this venue, I am giving a lot of credibility to their assessment. However, the bad news is that the actual procedure may involve a chest sternotomy instead of robotic surgery. The actual approach will be determined after all the pre-op testing is done just a few days before the operation. The team and I will meet after all the tests to decide the final approach before the Surgeon starts. The doctor, who is arguably one of best on the planet will be taking the safest approach to ensure the highest degree of success.
I like that attitude, even if its the worse case sternotomy scenario. It will take a few more weeks for recovery, and I expect a bit more pain to recover since they have to crack open your chest. Its a day and night scenario compared to the other surgeon who was going to do only a marginal fix if possible and a good likelihood that he would just install a pig's valve if it was too complicated. There is a reason why Cleveland Clinic is rated #1 and that is performance and safety.
The operation is set for mid May and I will be getting more details on the procedure itself, the travel arrangements, and other items I need to have done prior to arriving in Cleveland. In the meantime, there are no restrictions on travel before then so I am looking to book a trip back home in a couple of weeks....Yeah!!!!