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Betty: There's a little thing that goes on between Elizabeths that are called Bettys and Bettys that are just Bettys. Real Bettys are sassier (laugh).
In my yearbook underneath my picture it said Spaghetti Legs because I ... I played basketball until I couldn't even stay up on my feet anymore. I put everything into it. This tells you a great deal about me.
Jamie, imaging technologist: All right Miss Betty, you can come on back with me.
Betty: Every two years I get a chest X-ray. The doctor had called me up and said, "Betty, did you know you have an aneurysm?" I said no. And that was about five, six years ago.
Jamie: I'm gonna put an IV in you now.
Betty: I have good veins, too.
Jamie: My, gosh ... you've got a hose in that one.
Dr. Terramani: Most patients don't realize that they have this, what I usually refer to as a ticking time bomb.
Betty: They are little time bombs, you know. They could go off any time.
Dr. Terramani: When it ruptures you have seconds to live.
Betty: Dr. Terramani says you probably won't get to the hospital if that bursts.
Dr. Terramani: When the public hears aneurysm the first thought that goes through their mind is brain aneurysm.
Betty: I have two aneurysms.
Nurse: Are you warm enough?
Betty: One is aortic, which is right around your belly button. The other one is iliac, which is buried in your pelvis.
Dr. Terramani: Abdominal aortic aneurysms are a breakdown of the artery. And it becomes weaker as it dilates bigger and bigger.
Margie: She's very photogenic.
Dr. Terramani: It's exactly like inflating a balloon. You can get it to get bigger and bigger but there gets to a point where it can rupture. People lose consciousness, they have a heart attack and then they die.
Betty: It's not important to me to live for a long time. I'm a poster child for quality of life.
Margie: There you go.
Betty: Thank you, Margie.
Margie: You're welcome.
Betty: I've been so active all my life. To take that away from me would be to take away part of my soul, I think.
Dr. Terramani: How are you doing?
Betty: I'm doing fine. How are you?
Dr. Terramani: Nice to see you.
Betty: Nice to see you.
Dr. Terramani: So I have your CT scan results and your aortic aneurysm is still small. Your iliac artery aneurysm is the one that has changed.
Betty: Oh, OK.
Dr. Terramani: So it's over twice ... it's about two and a half times size normal.
Betty: You know you live with this for a while and nothing's happening. And then all of a sudden, oh, OK it’s time we do something.
Dr. Terramani: The traditional way of fixing aneurysms was with a big incision. Patients are in the intensive care unit for two or three days, they're in the hospital for five to seven days, so that stress on an older patient is significant.
Betty: This is the first time that I have felt a little bit nervous.
Dr. Terramani: Your anatomy is conducive to fix it with a minimally invasive stent graft. So the stent graft is going to go to there. So all your blood flow goes inside this tube and not into these two aneurysms.
Betty: It's very good news that I am able to be a candidate for stent surgery.
Betty: If you tell me that it's time....
Dr. Terramani: I think you'll do fine with the treatment.
Betty: OK, how confident are you?
Dr. Terramani: In your case we'll seal 98 percent.
Betty: Thank you very much.
Dr. Terramani: You're welcome.
Betty: You know I trust you with my life.
Dr. Terramani: We'll take good care of you.
Betty: I know you will.
Every now and then you think of where you might be if one of them burst.
Nurse: And what's Dr. Terramani doing for you today?
Betty: Two aneurysm stents.
You don't whine. You know you overcome. That's the way I was raised.
Nurse: Hey, you can put this lovely hat on your head here.
Dr. Terramani: Did you get some sleep last night?
Betty: I ... yeah. I can't wait for this to be over.
Dr. Terramani: Excellent.
Betty: Unfortunately, I bet Dr. Terramani that mine would burst before he would operate on me.
You remember our bet?
Dr. Terramani: What was our bet?
Betty: They're gonna burst before you operated on me.
Dr. Terramani: So then I ... then you owe me money.
Betty: Maybe he'll be a gentleman and not accept (laugh).
Dr. Terramani: You're a tough one.
Betty: I know.
Dr. Terramani: I'll see you back there, OK.
Betty: But you love me, right.
Dr. Terramani: I love you a lot, OK. OK, see you later.
The stent is premanufactured into a delivery system.
Anesthesiologist: You're gonna go to sleep in a few seconds here OK.
Dr. Terramani: The first thing we do is we make two small groin incisions.
Anesthesiologist: You have a nice nap, Betty.
Dr. Terramani: We advance the delivery system up into the top part of the aneurysm.
We ready to roll?
Nurse: We're ready.
Dr. Terramani: Let's see the main device.
We land the stent right below the kidney arteries and it has the precise ability to land exactly where you want it.
Nurse: You like that mark?
Dr. Terramani: Yes. So you'll see the stent expanding there. Now there's a stent covering the aneurysm here.
Nurse: You like to see that first stent come open.
Dr. Terramani: Open it up a little bit more.
Doctor: This where you get your seal.
Dr. Terramani: Hold respiration.
Nurse: Holding. I think that might be good. That might be the ticket right there.
Dr. Terramani: I like it up top. I like it down low.
All right, bring the lights back on. Call out to the family and let the daughter know everything is going fine.
She should be able to go home tomorrow. She'll be able to walk out of the hospital and then, you know, slowly go back to resuming activity but no more time bombs.
So, mom's doing great. No bandages so she'll just have two little incisions.
Betty's daughter: That's great.
Dr. Terramani: We did your surgery on the second of August and now we're about 23 days later.
Betty: I don't have to worry about anything bursting.
Dr. Terramani: Now your aneurysm in the abdominal aorta is sealed. Common iliac is sealed. The chance of either of these two aneurysms rupturing is basically zero percent. So that’s good news, the bad news is you lost the bet.
Betty: I know (laughing). Thank you so much.
Dr. Terramani: You're welcome.
Betty: My girlfriend and I are planning to go to Paris in the spring. I've never been to Paris (laughing). Au revoir.