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  • January 20, 2013

    My heart valve replacement

    By Ted Belman

    I am happy to say that I am now out of the hospital after having my aortic heart valve replaced.

    Fifteen years ago, in Canada, my doctor preformed a triple bypass for me which required open heart surgery. For the uninitiated, this means that the doctors had to saw through my sternum (breast bone) to separate both sides of my rib cage. Once done they separated both sides about four inches by the use of a very strong separater. This enables the doctors to do their thing inside by rib cage. This creates havoc on ones rib cage that takes months to recover from. When I woke up in the recovery room after this operation, I felt like I had been run over by a truck.

    So the news that I needed a valve replaced was received with considerable trepidation. It needn’t have been. A new technique was developed about a year ago which is now in use in 50 countries which enabled the replacement to be done without open heart surgery. Although Israel didn’t develop the technique, I am told, she greatly improved on the engineering.

    First, a valve must be selected from a number of alternatives. I choose to go with a pig’s valve. The procedure itself involves the insertion of a sleeve into the artery in one’s groin. This sleeve is inserted all the way along the artery and into the heart chamber itself, entering through the defective valve. Then the pig’s valve is inserted into the sleeve and pushed to the edge of the heart chamber where the defective valve is located. It is positioned in the centre of it. Next the sleeve is withdrawn allowing the mechanical device inserted with the valve, to expand thereby pressing the valve against the walls of the chamber to lock it in place. At the same time the new valve “crushes” the defective one.

    Unbelievable really. In less than six days I was released.

    I might mention that Arabs who were treated in the hospital are treated as any Jewish patient might be. Also many of the nurses on staff were Arabs and they showed me the same respect as they showed to the Arabs they were assisting.

    Many young Jewish girls were doing national service at the hospital and I was quick to praise them for their service. Finally there were a number of young Jewish volunteers happy just to help.

    As it turned out, one of the men who shared my room, I had met a a conference over a year ago. I enjoyed his company very much. He made aliya from Russia about 25 years ago and speaks English and Hebrew fluently. He works for a humanitarian organization. He talked about the Russian mentality. They don’t care about democracy and its strictures. They see the Arabs as enemies to be dealt with rather than citizens who have rights. If the Arabs are loyal citizens, no problems. If they are loyal and not subversive they are entitled to the same rights.

  • Posted by Ted Belman @ 5:39 pm | 38 Comments »

    38 Comments to My heart valve replacement

    1. the phoenix says:

      Glad to see you back Ted.

    2. Bert says:

      Truly glad to hear of your recovery and best wishes for a long and healthy future. We all need your voice and your articles.

    3. Shy Guy says:

      (Read more…)

      It’s supper time. That was enough.

    4. Lionel says:

      Very glad to hear Ted. Aliza was keeping me updated. Rest easy. speak to you soon.

    5. Canadian Otter says:

      It’s great that everything went so well with your operation.

      All the very best in your recovery! :-)

    6. Laura says:

      Welcome back Ted. I’m glad all is well.

    7. yamit82 says:

      I was a premed and all was fine till my first Gross anatomy cadaver I had to dissect. Changed my major the next day.

      Couple of years ago I had an Angioplasty procedure using balloon stents. Not the most comfortable time of my life but the next day I was as good as new. Doctor performing my procedure was an Arab Bedouin.

      Happy you came through in good shape and I see by your experience that you took away deeper insight into our (Israels)sometimes paradoxical realities.

    8. XLucid says:

      I wish you a speedy recovery.

      Although it is not the subject, as to Arabs, they are undoubtedly treated as Jews. Better than that, Jewish patients are required to leave the hospital to make room for Arabs. As an example, they even asked a Jewish patient who suffered diabetic coma during 24 hours to leave: we are talking about a young woman who was requested to leave the hospital at midnight.

      Therefore, if arab medical staff are acting as human beings, it is the least they can do : no applause and no medal.

      Once again, I wish you a Refoua Shelema.

    9. rongrand says:

      Welcome back Ted.

      I always knew you had a lot of heart.

    10. the phoenix says:

      @ yamit82:

      Doctor performing my procedure was an Arab Bedouin.

      Read “The attack” by yasmina khadra
      I think you would enjoy this book.

    11. Eric R. says:

      Welcome back Ted.

      And please tell your substitute hosts at this site that you are not the National Rifle Association. :)

    12. drjb says:

      Ted,my best wishes for a full and speedy recovery!

    13. yamit82 says:

      @ the phoenix:

      I’ll look for it on Amazon, Thanks

    14. roamnrab says:

      May Hashem send you a “Rephuah Sheleima” and grant you many long and healthy years to continue your “Holy” work.
      PLEASE- Rest Up for a while.

    15. Ted,

      I am glad to see you back online, and I wish you a very speedy recovery.

    16. john Train says:

      From: LTGJC
      Date: January 20, 2013 11:04:34 PM PST
      To: ltc h
      Subject: Wish Ted Belman a speedy recovery from all of us.
      Reply-To: LTGJC

      Please tell him that we respect him and that we circulate his articles.

      May he live many more years in health and happiness.

      John Train

      This email message is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and
      may contain confidential information. Any unauthorized review, use,
      disclosure or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended
      recipient, please contact the sender by reply email and destroy all copies
      of the original message.

    17. keelie says:

      Ted, you see what’s happened since you left Canada? I’m in the state of having no idea what’s going on anywhere, any time…

      Good to hear you’re now as good as new. I repeat what everyone else is saying: Get lots of rest and relaxation so that you heal without any problems.

    18. Stan Revich says:

      MAZEL TOV!

    19. David Barrett says:

      Refuah shlemah and may HaShem bless you with good health in the future
      PS your first op as described was CLOSED heart surgery

    20. jeff says:

      Good news! Glad to hear you are recovering and doing well. Thank you for your service with Israpundit.

    21. Honey Bee says:

      Live and be well with nothing but sweetness from now on, no more stings!!!!!!!!!!

    22. Mike Lumish says:

      I just want to add my best wishes, as well, Ted.

      We need you strong and ready to speak out.

    23. aggie says:

      Glad you had such good care. My father had the procedure in the US at 70. He is now 95. May you have until 120 or longer!

    24. Martin says:

      I had wondered why for a spell I have not received Israpundit after so long a time. I just re-subscribed. Now I know.

      Of course, I wish you well. You have become an important person, and justifiably so for your work, for which I – and I am certain – all subscribers agree, pro and con.

      But I would like to add it’s refreshing to read where many Israelis are beginning to come to their senses knowing at long last that the way to peace cannot not be peaceful.

    25. Michael Chenkin says:

      rephuah Sheleima

    26. Linda Rivera says:

      Ted, I’m so glad that everything went well and you are now out of the hospital!
      My best wishes to you, Linda

    27. Refuah Shlemah, and … bis hundert zwantzig.

    28. Mickey Oberman says:


      I am glad that the operation was much easier this time.

      i wish you a quick complete recovery and continued good health.

      Mickey Oberman

    29. Robert says:

      Wishing you refuah shlemah and the richest of HaShem’s blessings, Ted. You are a blessing!

    30. catarin says:

      etgay ellway astfay, edtay. That’s pig latin, which you can now understand. Can we expect to hear that you are wallowing in Dead Sea mud?

    31. Yidvocate says:

      Ted – I just have to add my voice to the chorus to express my delight at your recovery and return. You are much too important to to the Jewish people to loose. Rafuah shalama and much blessing!

    32. Andy Lewis says:

      @ Eric R.:

      please tell your substitute hosts at this site that you are not the National Rifle Association.

      Damn straight.

    33. BethesdaDog says:

      Glad to hear you’re doing well. Here’s hoping to a quick and complete recovery. Thank God for excellent Israeli medical care.

    34. Robert S Barnes says:

      Refuah shlema – till 120. Did you have the procedure done at Shaarai Tzedek by any chance? My wife is a radiology resident there.

    35. Ted Belman says:

      A heartfelt thank you to all those who extended good wishes for a speedy recovery. For those who commented on the value of my work, a special thanks.

    36. dweller says:

      “A new technique was developed about a year ago which is now in use in 50 countries which enabled the replacement to be done without open heart surgery. Although Israel didn’t develop the technique, I am told, she greatly improved on the engineering. First, a valve must be selected from a number of alternatives. I choose to go with a pig’s valve.”

      As I recall, Barbara Bush (Mrs #41, mother to GWB) went with a pig’s valve also for her aortic valve replacement. She was about 85 at the time.

      Of course, this was some yrs ago, so I doubt that her operation would’ve been as non-invasive as yours.

      Glad it turned out well for you, and that you’re back doing what you do. Here’s to a rapid & thorough recovery.

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