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Crack a chest vs. close a PFO percutaneously- should insurance decide??

Posted Dec 03 2009 12:44pm

Waiting in fear for another possible stroke while insurance companies deny treatment.  This is the common emotion that many stroke survivors share with me while they angrily battle their insurance companies.  Here’s another recent post to know-stroke.org that illustrates this frustration…

Jen writes- “So I am in a very similar boat. Although, I am only 21, and had a ’stroke’ this summer. Lucky for me the clot that could have been a full blown stroke happened to end up in my eye instead, killing 1/4th of my left eye but leaving my brain alone. They found my PFO 2 weeks later, and were shocked I had never had migraines. Although looking back I always had, but they affected my eyes more than my head so I never thought they were the same thing as the headaches that kept my sister home in the dark all day long. But three months ago (1.5 months after the clot) I started with the every day full fledged migraines. Fun stuff. Anyway, I have been fighting to get my insurance company to cover the closure for over 3 months now. They refused the device closure 3 times, and it looks like I am going to have some sort of surgery, possibly open heart surgery, on the 21st of december (when the semester is over). To tell you the truth, it is absolutely terrifying, and I can’t understand why they won’t pay to put the device in my heart, but would prefer to cut open my breastbone. I am glad to hear your closure did in fact reduce the symptoms.  My worst fear is to have open heart surgery and be laid up for 6 weeks only to still have the headaches and heart palpitations.

We need to do better!

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