It turns out that 10% to 15% of the people my age (63!) developAortic Valve Stenosis and about half require surgery within 3 years. Some die before it is diagnosed or die as a result of corporate death panels telling them their insurance refuses to cover the procedure.
$200000 Heart-valve replacement or $10000? [a PDF]
Well, it turns out my insurance DOES cover the procedure. And, after monitoring it three years, it's no longer elective surgery. The co-pay is $600.
So... a pig valve? Nope. Besides the failures, there are so many diseases that people on four feet carry to humans. The porcine list here is highly abbreviated.
Mechanical? Nope. No rat poison in my future.
There are other options! (Plural) Nuff sed.
So on the 8th, I get a valve job and after I recuperate (5 to 7 days) I'm back home.