19 May 2010 - by ~ 0 Comments

iFib

I cannot believe that six whole months have soared by since I was given a new lease on life. A tiny device called an ICD was surgically implanted beneath a patch of muscle tissue in my chest. Since I have this disease known as Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which has been ravaging through my body over the past four full decades, I was surprised that the surgeon could locate more than a few thin strands of muscle in there with which to work. But he did, and now I have a small metal box in my chest that I affectionately refer to as the iFib. This iFib came complete with wires that are connected to my heart. The iFib is both a pacemaker and defibrillator all boxed up in a compact little package. It is about the same size as an iPod Nano, but it can’t play music. All it does is guard against sudden death. Let’s see an iPod do that!

The pacemaker has been working like a charm, as evidenced by my steady heart rate. I am not sure about the defibrillator, though, as the only way I will ever know for certain whether or not it is functioning properly is if my heart rate ever goes through the roof and I get shocked out of my skin. Trust me, I am not all too eager to find out, but having this thing in my body does give me peace of mind. The iFib may indeed save my life one of these days, and it may very well buy me a few more years. And that in itself made the surgery worthwhile.

Be it a tracheostomy tube, ventilator, medication or an iFib, you must arm yourself with all of the available ammunition to have a fighting chance against Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Give me the arsenal and I will gladly battle in the trenches, not just for me, but for all others involved in this dirty little war.