John Drislan Age 64 (Born Dec. 25th in Fall River, Mass.) Presently live in Mt. Pleasant, SC. Graduate of Holy Cross College, Worcester, Mass.; Masters Degree from Manhattan College New York; 23 years United States Air Force, navigator (RC-130, B-57, C-141)over 9,000 flying hours; retired as Lt. Col. Taught high school math for one year, then spent 16 years as a Personnel Officer with the Charleston School District. Retired from that position in 1996. Wife Eileen celebrated 40 years of her tolerating me this past November. Submitted 5/29/98. 97% recovered still get tired very easily, but I can smell the flowers,and see the sky!
Male, 63 years old. Smoker for 48 years (that is at least 350,400 cigarettes). Quit cold turkey. Hospitalized twice previous in my life, in the 6th grade and 10 years ago with colon cancer (no further flare ups).
Aneurysm discovered at 2cm, grew to an estimated 6.5cm; but the operation revealed it was 8 or 9 cm. The aneurysum was located in the descending aorta. Surgery performed on Feb. 10, 1997. Released from the hospital on the 14th. Not much pain associated with the hospital stay thanks to the use of an epidural technique. Arriving home had trouble with my bowels for a few weeks (Colace helped). It has been three months since the surgery but I feel myself getting tired a lot quicker than usual. (Really can put meaning to the saying "The spirit is willing but the flesh indeed is weak"). Presently do not take any medications.
Do most of the driving and running of errands. Minor (but pesky) irritant has been the growing back of hair on my stomach (whenever clothes rub against the new growth it is very irritating. Have found the use of lotion to keep the hairs "slicked down" has helped. Still have occasional pain on the right side and in the back, but as pointed out to me there were a lot of muscles cut and as I picked up from Bill Maple's last note there are also nerves that have to heal.
The more I read the narratives and read over mail from people on the support network I realize how fortunate I am to be alive, and that the pains and irritations that I have are minor compared to what other people have experienced.
Update 24 Mar 2001
Over four years since my surgery, all those "petty" problems that seemed to "important" are deep in the past. I am100%, and the only reminder is the telltale "zipper" that every so slowly is disappearing. Not a cigarette since quiting "cold turkey" in Feb. '97.
Will be 68 on Christmas Day, the doctor discovered type 2 sugar diabetes which can be treated by diet and exercise (never realized how much sugar content is contained in which we eat — try looking at the sugar content on many of the items that you regularly consume — it will shock you!)
Exercise consists of yard work and tread mill (just got off the latter after 55 minutes and going 2.14 miles. You really feel good after a workout like that (but not during it I must admit).
Continue to read the narratives regarding others and my prayers go out to those who have found they have an aneurysm — but they should read the narratives! YOU CAN MAKE IT! OTHERS HAVE!
Return to Contents
Return to Aneurysm & AVM Support