Category Archives: Poland

Fog lifts for Alberta man

I was thrilled to see this in my inbox this afternoon; a wonderful report from James Cooper of Edmonton, AB.

Hi Evan: You spoke with me a little over 5 weeks or so ago about going to Poland. I just got back Thursday night and the results have been amazing. I had the procedure done late Monday afternoon and it has been incredible since. In less than a week I almost do not have a limp any longer.  My memory is coming back. I am way more mentally sharp.  Things that seemed to confuse me before our not a problem to think through or understand now.  Its like I have come out of some sort of a fog.

It was frustrating me but I did not know how much it was affecting me until I had the procedure.  Joint  and neck pain I have dealt with for years appears to be just gone. The neurologist over there was shocked when he did my exit examination.  My weak right leg was very close in strength and mobility to my left in only two days.   When he first saw me I could barely lift the right leg off the floor by its self let alone hold it in the air.  I could stand on one leg and easily keep my balance with with either leg when he checked me over.

To say I am excited is an understatement.  Thanks for your encouragement and support. I am going to write a letter to my neurologist asking her to change my diagnosis from a MS patient to a CCSVI patient. If they contend over here that the liberation treatment is not a cure for MS, than that would indicate by my results they must have diagnosed me incorrectly with MS, or admit the two are the same.  Should be interesting.

Fantastic news James!

And in case a Holley from Calgary who has been on the Rutherford radio show is reading this, can you contact James?  In that “fog” he was talking about his misplaced your email and would like to be in touch. You can also leave word for him via a comment to this post.

Photo credit CoderMind.com

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Filed under Guest post, Poland

My surgery now on YouTube

You know, I can watch this video again and again and again. So great to see it is up on YouTube, where the world can see just how simple this life-enhancing procedure really was. I’ll put this up against those suits from the More Study society droning on about the horrible dangers of routine angioplasty any day.

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Filed under Future thoughts, Poland, Post op

live footage from the CBC – and the amazing generosity of friends

For those who missed it on television back in Canada, you can see me while I am actually having the surgery in this amazing clip from CBC news. Well, I think it is amazing!

I was fairly ebullient then  –“piece of cake” I think I blurted out at one point — but less so waking up in the hospital the next morning after a night where I tried out my brother’s clorazepam as a sleep aid. Some video was shot of that with my little flip camera and I posted it on YouTube so that Don Monet and Becky Rynor could play it for the guests assembled for the  grand opening of the magnificent new Cube Gallery in Ottawa.

As short and dozy as this clip is, reports are that Becky accompanied it with an eloquent speech and then they commenced a pass-the-hat fundraiser. I’m so touched by that I can hardly find the words; what a wonderful and unexpected gesture!

I am also incredibly moved by the amazing generosity that has been shown through  online donations and even envelopes dropped off at our house in Ottawa. I am blessed to have such friends, I really am, and I will be contacting each of you when I return to Canada to tell you just how much your thoughtfulness has meant to me.

Two more more media stories while I remember. If you’d like to hear the interview I did post-op on the Friday morning for CBC Ottawa morning, click here and navigate down to the segment that looks like this:

That should work for another day or so anyway, from the time of this posting.

Jennifer Campbell in the Ottawa Citizen also wrote this follow-up piece, where I manage to get a little snippy about the difference in medical approaches to vascular blockages, comparing Poland to Canada.

Today marks the end of our time in Katowice, a city we’ll always remember with a great deal of affection for its warm welcome, its friendly and efficient medical facilities, the amazing Euromedic Poland team, and the chance it gave us for a new beginning. It will have a special place in our hearts forever.

We’re leaving Katowice on the train today, and tomorrow we fly home from Krakow airport.

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Filed under Katowice, Media, Poland, Post op

new drug regime!

A result of two separate trips to the drugstore. My brother’s meds are on the right and include a Polish brand blood-thinner; my pharmacy was out of the Polish and had to substitute a more expensive Belgium brand. How expensive? My total batch of meds – 4 kinds, including a weeks worth of injectable blood thinner – set me back 400  zloty – that’s about 130 dollars. Duncan’s was 330 zloty – he was the cannier shopper, obviously.

The good news is that we can stop injecting after a week. We did our first shots a few minutes ago and both went off without a hitch. No bleeders!

We can stop the oral blood thinner “Plavix”after 2 months and when that stops we can give up the Polprazol as well – it’s for preventing stomach aches from the blood thinner. The aspirin, however, we keep taking for life.

This afternoon we are heading out to do some photography of Katowice’s amazing industrial heritage sites –including a disused 19th century coal-mine right in the city centre! I love that kind of stuff and I’ve been looking forward to this afternoon all week long.

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Filed under Katowice, Poland, Post op

Back from surgery – updated

Yesterday was the start of a whole day and night in the hospital; by 11.oo am I had been blood tested, ECG’d, sonogramed, and finally given the happy news that I had serious vascular blockages confirmed in my neck! Repeatserious blockages in my neck! Think high-fives all around; when the wife of the guy in the next bed heard *his* positive blockage news, she came in and gave him a big kiss. It is was everyone in the group was waiting to hear. Blockages are what you want, because CCSCI surgery can *do* something about them.

So an hour later or so I was wheeled an had some orange “tingly” liquid painted across my lower abdomen and upper legs, and then I felt a slight pinch as the big vein in my inside leg was opened. We were on!

The surgery done while I was conscious, it was painless and over surprisingly quickly. I didn’t see a thing, and that is just the way I wanted it. But while I had been looking anywhere but down, Dr. Ludyga has been inserting a 3 cm long stent in a the big vein on the right side of my neck and then ballooning out a constriction in a vein on the left side of my neck. Before I knew it I was back in my room on the ward staring out the picture window at a lovely courtyard with big trees and an old helicopter with no rotors, that I think had been converted into a play structure.

Duncan and I shared that view pre-and-post op with a very likeable chap with the very English name of Nigel; an ex-copper with the Metropolitan Police.

We all came through it together, sharing tidbits of what we were learning as we went. The Polish doctors all have excellent English but the nurses, not so much…so if one of us found out that that Polish word for bedpan was pronounced “Kashkan” that could quickly be of use to the other guys as well, as you might imagine, since we were forbidden from walking to the toilet and tearing the dressing covering the puncture on our femoral veins.

But all that was wearing a bit thin by this morning, and when we got the word that we could put our street clothes on get ready for our driver, the grins broke out all around.

Anyway, I am feeling fantastic so far; I am going for long walks without tripping; typing with fingers I had forgotten about and enjoying the happy buzz between the people in our group that came through it together and are now comparing notes.

And now Andrew Lee from the CBC is here in my room now filming me as I type this; I will sign off now but hope to report more later in the afternoon..

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Filed under Katowice, Media, Poland, Post op

On tenterhooks for 12 more hours

Andrew Lee ready to capture Soviet-era monumentalism --and some Canadian guy droning on about his health

Andrew Lee ready to capture some Soviet-era monumentalism - plus some Canadian guy droning on about his health

Today was all about the MRI. We started the day in a relaxed enough way; a leisurely breakfast in the morning room of the hotel where we were lucky enough to meet the administrative director of the EuroMedic clinic; a fantastically competent and energetic 43 year-old we call “Greg” as that seems to be as close as we can ge to the pronunciation of his name, at least with only a coffee break’s worth of practice. Continue reading

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Filed under Katowice, Poland

Sunrise over Silesia

Sunrise from the Hotel Qubus; first morning in Katowice

Six a.m. as seen from the Hotel Qubus; first morning in Katowice

We arrived in Poland at 6.00 P..M yesterday after a long trip; in my case it was Ottawa-Toronto-Frankfurt-Krakow-Katowice. My brother Duncan had an even longer day of it, starting in Winnipeg early on Monday morning before meeting me at the airport in Toronto. Soon after that Andrew Lee (the CBC producer from Winnipeg) met up with us and we all boarded the Frankfurt flight. Continue reading

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Filed under Katowice, Poland