Tuesday, 9 December 2008


About five years ago I started to get pain in my left calf. The cause being a blockage in my femoral artery just above the knee. I found I couldn't walk far without getting "the burn". About three years ago I started to get a similar problem in my right leg, but the blockage was in my iliac artery, so it effected my whole leg.

As I wrote earlier, Andrew Holden and the Radiology team at Auckland Hospital fixed my right leg in September. Since then a minor blockage was found in my left iliac artery. That got fixed six weeks ago.

Last Tuesday I spent two hours on the table again. My left femoral artery is now a beautiful clear pipe rather than a lump of sludge.

And, folks, that is hard for me to find words to describe. I haven't been able to walk properly for years but can now. To be frank, I've felt less than adequate; there was so much I couldn't do. Now I hope that there isn't much that I can't do. Ten years ago I thought nothing of playing two rounds of golf a day. That ability dwindled so that two trips to the dustbin hurt. Elated? You bet I am!

Again I thank Andrew Holden and the team at Auckland Hospital for what they've done for me. Not only is it very special to me, it is special in a global sense. Blockages of this nature in the arms and legs have been, at best, difficult to treat, there is simply to much movement soft tissue movement involved for a normal stent to work well. Bypass surgery and endarterectomy are the treatments of choice. That is changing and I have the priviledge of being part of that change. A flexible stent has been developed by Flexible Stenting Solutions that can be used in cases similar to mine and I am the eleventh person in the world to have one! Mr. Holden is conducting the first-in-man trial and I'm a part of it. The effect of this treatment for cases like mine will be mind-blowing for suffreers.

The results so far are superb; overwhelmingly so. My future has changed dramtically and boy am I looking forward to it. I said it to him in hospital and I'll say it again here, in public. Six months from now I'm going to play a round of golf with Andrew Holden. That's all 18 holes on a proper course. I'll not be trying to beat him, I just want him to see what a change he's made. I also want to buy him a damn good lunch 'cos he deserves it!

I'd also like to thank Louise and Cleo in the Radiology department who looked after me both before and after the procedure. You're stars, thank you!


dee1979 said...

wow that is some achievement!

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