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     Marijke & Piet.

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A forced recess: Infective or bacterial Endocarditis

EndocarditisThe garden has seen one of its poorest years ever. Initially.
At the end of the year all looks good again. During the first half year of 2014 my wife had to do the maintenance on here own. During the second half of the year I gradually gained control again. Not only about the garden bud also about my life.

Just after my 60-sixt birthday in September 2013 and my early retirement, thinks went terrible wrong with my health. Too tired, little appetite, an irritating cough and even a faint.
A round Christmas I got a number of health complains. But then, in these days you don't want to go to your general practitioner. Until it really got bad during early January. My weight had dropped about 10 kg (22 Pounts) in a few months and my blood values where bizarre. During the first quarter of 2014 I frequently got into the hospital for a number of examinations. Prostate, intestine, stomach, gullit, longs and more. Noting suspicious.
A thorax-scan was planned in the last week of March. This was a sort of last hope to trace the organ guilty of all the complaints.

It never came this far.
On March 19 around six hour clock, during the meal, my wife realized that I could not eat and then not talk. Also none of my right site limbs no longer functioned. I only remember vaguely that my wife helped me into our car and that she brought me into the hospital with a wheelchair. Then I waked up in the middle of the night.
Then it toke a couple of day's to find out that I was in the wrong department of the hospital. Although I had a a cerebral- or brain-haemorrhage (Dutch: hersenbloeding) do real problem was a Bacterial Endocarditis. Later we found out that this was a very critical week and a half or so.

Infective or bacterial Endocarditis is an infection of the inner lining of my heart resulting in damaged heart valves (Dutch: streptocokken). At the same time (19 march 2014) a cerebral infarction and/or brain haemorrhage (Dutch: hersenbloeding/herseninfarct) resulted in aphasia (Dutch: afasie).

After the specific bacteria causing the endocarditis was identified from my blood culture tests, a course of intravenous (IV) antibiotic therapy was started. IV antibiotics was given for as long as 7 weeks to control the infection. Symptoms where monitored throughout therapy and blood tests where performed to determine the effectiveness of treatment.
This was no fun. The therapy was day and night. All this extra liquid let me to piss every one or two hours minimum. Until I got a bladder infection, that let me piss every half our. But I survived.
During the second half of 2014 I got regular therapy for logopedia and this brought me where I am to day.
Initially the heart valve damage was substantial. Surgery was required to fix the heart valve and improve heart function. However. Due to the cerebral infarction the risk was, and is, regarded as too high. I feel great and, with some restrictions, I can do what I want to do, including all garden activity. In particular enjoy the garden and nature.

And how got this bacteria into my hart? Well, for sure we now know that it got there during a treatment of a root canal in 2006.

Disclaimer: The garden is still one of my passions. Unfortunately due to the cerebral infarction/brain-haemorrhage I now have a aphasia. This improved substantially in the course of the last year. I am sure that I will never be the same person. Listening is just fine. Talking is more difficult and takes more time. Perhaps no more philosophical discussions like the old day's. But with some patiences that is still possible. Writing and reading is also more difficult. This means that I will continue this Blog and maintain the website. You will have to be patient because updates will be less frequent. Also you have to be forgiving with regard to my writing even with spell-checking.

1 comment to A forced recess: Infective or bacterial Endocarditis

  • Patient Update:
    Unfortunately the brain damage did not stop.
    In 2015 I got Diplopia, “Double vision” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diplopia), in my case it first occurred temporary but by the end of the year it was continuous (damage of the optic-nerve on the brainstem?).
    This means there is no fusion of the image of the two eyes (the eyes work independently).

    What also is unfortunate that this coincides with Macular degeneration (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macular_degeneration) of my eyes. This is all very tiring both for the eyes and for the brain. Working in the garden is not only tiresome but also a bit dangerous.