High-Line Electrical Operator
Texas Team Roper
On-X Aortic Valve Recipient
“I chose an On-X valve because I didn’t want another operation and I could reduce my blood-thinner medication.”
Diagnosed at age 31
At age 31, Jason learned he had been born with a bicuspid aortic valve – one that had only two leaflets instead of the usual three.
Jason works as a high-line operator for an electrical provider, traveling all over the US to do his job. His condition caused him to feel increasingly tired and short-of-breath, which are typical symptoms of aortic valve disease. Over time, it was became clear that his aortic valve needed to be surgically replaced.
“My doctors suggested I get an On-X valve so [I] wouldn’t have to have repeat heart surgery every 10 years or so, to replace a worn-out tissue valve.”
Jason talked about his treatment options with his doctors. “Both my cardiologist, Dr. Alistair Fyfe and my surgeon, Dr. David Moore at Baylor Heart Institute in Plano, suggested a mechanical valve because I was so young,” he says today. “Even at age 36, it’s possible I would already be on my second heart valve surgery if a tissue valve had been implanted.”
“I haven’t slowed down a bit – I’m still very active with my family and in team roping events in Texas.”
Family is important to Jason, hunting and fishing with his two children when he is not working as a High-Line Electrical Operator. Jason, who also spends his spare time working with horses in the rough-and-tumble sport of team roping, reports that he felt much better after surgery.
“I have not slowed down a bit,” says Jason, who takes blood-thinning medication daily. “I had no changes to my diet, and monitor my blood with a home monitor once a month. I’m also still active in team roping events in my small town in Texas.”
Jason’s doctor reduced his blood thinning medication because he had an On-X aortic valve.
After the FDA approved lowering the dosage of blood-thinning medications for patients with On-X aortic heart valves, Jason immediately visited Dr. Fyfe who prescribed the lower dose medication. “It’s even easier to maintain my blood-thinning medication. I chose an On-X valve because I didn’t want another reoperation due to a failing tissue valve and I was able to reduce my blood-thinner medication,” Jason says. “It’s easy and helps me stay steady.”
Reduce INR after 3 months of standard therapy.
NOTE: This story reflects one person’s experience. Talk to your doctor about your situation and possible treatment options.