Our ACHA bloggers cover many topics relevant to the CHD community. 

Moving Mountains and Hearts, Continued

by Stephanie Hodgson on Thursday, Jun 16, 2011

For the first part of this blog post, click here.

The first ACHA Conference I attended was in the summer of 2005 in the New York/New Jersey area. I remember that day so well. I had been going through a separation from my now ex-husband. I was feeling sort of emotionally raw, having been out of touch with everyone at ACHA, and I was feeling isolated and sad. However, at the conference, I met some of the best doctors for my specific heart physiology and defect.

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Moving Mountains and Hearts

by Stephanie Hodgson on Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011

When I first was diagnosed with a large ventricular septal defect (VSD) with Eisenmenger’s physiology at age 17 in 1983, I finally understood why I was always so blue. And, after the numbness wore off from knowing that surgery was not an option for my heart defect, unless I were to have a complete heart and lung transplant, I set my heart on graduating high school with high honors, going on to Art School in Pittsburgh, PA, and graduating at the top of my class in December 1985.

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About My Father, A Man Affected by TGA

by Jessica Garner on Friday, Jun 10, 2011

I am a neonatal nurse and the daughter of a man affected by transposition of the great arteries (TGA). Growing up, I never saw or knew the effects of my father’s heart condition. Now, as a nurse working with newborns, I see firsthand what my father and his family went through. This is the story of my father, in his own words, that describes what he’s been through since birth:

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ACHA Conference Review: It's All About Lifelong Survival

by Paul Cardall on Tuesday, Jun 07, 2011

There are more than a million adults living with congenital heart disease.

A little over a month ago, the Adult Congenital Heart Association gathered for a conference in L.A. that brought together a majority of physicians who specialize in caring for potential lifelong survivors in the field of congenital heart disease.

I was fortunate to attend with my wife and meet many of these doctors along with several adult survivors who like me are enjoying a good life despite its many challenges.

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Music and My Heart: What a Pair!

by Kelly Deeny on Thursday, Jun 02, 2011

Music has been an instrumental—pun intended—part of my life since I had open heart surgery back in January of 1979. Not quite two years of age, I lay in a hospital crib waiting for my body to heal. Through what I can only guess were feelings of fear, loneliness and confusion at my situation, I do know one thing—my love affair with music began during that time.

I'm very thankful to have two parents who appreciate the creative arts. For whatever reason, they decided to play records for me when I was recuperating from my surgery. From what I've been told some of their choices included Disney albums and the soundtrack from “Grease.” Which explains a lot! Believe me, I consider myself a full-blooded Disney-fied girl and I know pretty much every word, spoken or song, of “Grease.”

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Meeting My Own Personal Rock Star

by Christy Sillman on Thursday, May 26, 2011

Patient or nurse, nurse or patient — who am I? This was a question I faced often while I attended the Adult Congenital Heart Association's national conference in Los Angeles about a month ago.

I had intentions to stretch myself between both worlds — to attend both patient and health professional sessions. After all I am both a nurse and an adult with congenital heart disease.

My name badge didn’t specify “who” I was, but next to my name badge, my role was very clear. My “zipper” isn’t that red anymore, but it is visible to those who look for it. I caught myself staring at attendee’s chests, looking, wondering… professional or Zipper Club member?

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Introducing the ACHA Blog

by Terri Schaefer on Tuesday, May 24, 2011

On behalf of ACHA, and especially all of our ACHA future bloggers, I want to welcome you to our new ACHA Blog! Thank you for visiting, and I’m looking forward to you becoming regular readers to see all that we have to offer; we have quite a few bloggers on board who will post about many topics relevant to the CHD community.

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Disclaimer

The opinions expressed by ACHA bloggers and those providing comments on the ACHA Blog are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of the Adult Congenital Heart Association or any employee thereof. ACHA is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the ACHA bloggers.

The contents of this blog are presented for informational purposes only, and should not be substituted for professional advice. Always consult your physicians with your questions and concerns.

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