Aortic Bifemoral Bypass Surgery
(Peripheral Artery Bypass Surgery)
Hi my names Michelle and on the 5th July 2017 I had my Aortic Bifemoral Bypass Surgery. I had suffered chronic pain and loss of mobility for many years.This surgery is performed when you have a severe blockage or blockages in your Arteries that stop the blood flow through your legs to your feet.
In some patients with Peripheral Artery Disease PAD/PVD there is only a need for stents to be placed. For me though one blockage was in the Aorta near my navel and the other in my Femoral Artery (main artery of the leg).
Peripheral Bypass Graft attachment
Femoral Popliteal Bypass
There are two ways a Peripheral Bypass Graft can be attached, one is using your own veins this is a blood vessel graft. The other is a graft which is the one that I had: is a synthetic or manmade graft the material used is perfectly safe within your body.
These peripheral bypass grafts are sewn above and below the blockage. You now have a brand new and clear access for your blood to travel down your leg or legs. Your previously blocked areas remain as they were.
Support Group pad
I belong to a Peripheral Arterial- Vascular Disease group on Facebook. This is a lovely friendly private group full of personal and helpful information and support. Peripheral Arterial- Vascular Disease Support Group On Facebook
Femoral Popliteal Bypass Image Enlarged
Pre Op tests before surgery
You will have several medical tests before your surgery I even had some repeated. Be sure you will be given blood tests before surgery. Your blood gives a very in depth reading showing your general health and whether or not you have any infections.
A test for your heart: Although there are several I had a heart stress test before surgery where you are on a treadmill. Due to my chronic pain, I could not keep walking enough to complete this test for the appropriate length of time. And so had to have a further Angiogram, I had good results.
A Lung Function test, also called a Pulmonary Function Test. This is very important it is a test for your Lungs and breathing . Your Vascular Surgery Specialist must be satisfied that your lungs will cope throughout your surgery.
There should be little if any breathing problems during your surgery. Mine were not good due to COPD or Emphysemia caused from smoking.
Epidural Anesthesia Risks For Me
For my up coming Aortobifemoral Bypass Surgery, Epidural Anesthesia was the choice of my Anesthetist due to me having COPD or Emphysema
Yes, like the surgery there are risks and I had read many online, including videos. You should too!
I was very grateful that I had the Epidural anesthetic as it virtually kept me pain free and it remained in place for three days after my operation.
Aortic Bifemoral Bypass Surgery
My incision was from my breast bone to my pubic bone and another incision near my groin. This incision was stapled. During this time I was still in ICU Intensive Care Unit in fact I was there for 3 days.
What happens in ICU after your Aortic Bifemoral Bypass Surgery
You will be attached to monitors keeping track of all your vital signs. Various tubes will supply you with fluid, and medications as needed and you will also have a Catheter removing urine.
I remained totally on fluid for my 3 days in ICU
You will hear various beeping noises, these are nothing to worry about just the machine doing its job. Nurses will be with you constantly checking that everything is as it should be.
Pain for me in honesty I felt none, this was because for my 3 days in recovery I was still receiving the Epidural anaesthesia.
Successful (Peripheral Artery Bypass Surgery)
On the 4th day in hospital I was moved to a private room. I was still unable to eat solids and getting cranky, My nurse phoned my Specialist and he gave permission for a small meal,very tiny, lovely man!
Pain wise the Epidural had been removed before the nurses moved me to my room and I was given other pain medication. Cannot say I was experiencing any chronic pain at least not while I stayed still. Turning to lie on my side was umm difficult and yes painful. I needed help only that first day to go to the bathroom,the nursing staff were great.
Physiotherapy treatment and a walking cane was given and up and down the hospital hallway I walked . Was there much pain ,no not really. Returned home on my 6th day, well I did ask, just wanted to be home in my own bed. Alternate staples were removed from my very swollen stomach and the rest would be removed by a home care nurse a few days later.
My chronic pain had remained undiagnosed.
My hope is that my personal story may just help someone else.
I was finally diagnosed with: Peripheral Artery Disease.
Could you have Peripheral Artery Disease
Please keep in mind that Peripheral Artery Disease or you may know it as Peripheral Vascular Disease is not a disease that is restricted only to the elderly.
Peripheral Artery Disease Symptoms
Please be aware that you may not have all of the Peripheral Artery Disease Symptoms: (I didn’t). I suffered the first and last symptoms dot pointed here:
- Severe pain lower back hip area which eases when sitting down
- Pain in lower legs or feet which eases when at rest.
- Losing the ability to walk far- your mobility
- Tired and aching legs
- Sores on your feet or toes that don’t heal
- Bluish hue or very pale skin on legs and feet
- Loss of hair on your legs