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Old 09-09-2003, 08:30 PM   #1
bneal bneal is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: middletown, oh
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Post Myriad heart problems at too young an age...

I just turned 49 last week. I have had 5 MI'S> 5 angiograms and 4 angioplastys', resulting in the placement of 8 stents. Due to some major mistakes committed by my local VA on the last procedure; I now have a serious problem with CHF.
I was in pretty miserable shape while recovering from my last MI in Sept of 02. Around Thanksgiving I suddenly was having seriuos resperatory problems. Unable to breathe(felt like drowning in quicksand). Kept going to VA and local emerengency rooms. My blood oxy was around 98 o/o. Xray showed clear lungs as did the stethescope. All I got was occassional antibiotics and sent home with an I don't know. All I know is that for about 8 months I didn't sleep and I dreaded the dawning of a new day. Many times the thought in my mind was that there would not be a tommorrow.
After hospitalization in Jan.(they thought I might have a non-viral pnuemonia) where I was tested for copd and they ran a series of tests to rule out CHF. I then saw my primary care provider at the VA. He didn't even touch me. His conclusion was panic/anxiety disorder and tried to get me too take psych meds. I agreed on the condition that I see a psychciatryst first. He said that we could try a couple of meds too help me at least sleep a bit. They helped marginaly-from no sleep at all to a couple of hours is a big deal. On a one month follow-up he said my problem was physiological and marched me into the Drs office. They took a blood test and decided I had a kidney infection which was starting to cause water build up. Again I went home with antibiotics(no thought to the fact that I had gained 15 lbs. in two weeks since my last visit). Now during this time I would feel all congested and get the cold sweats every night. So he said to continue with the anxiety meds.
2 days later(4th of july) I started to feel worse than ever-if that is possible. My wife took me to the VA emergency room. For the first time I had edima-my left foot and ankle were all swollen up as well as my abdomen (BTW my body temp was 91 degrees). They hospitalized me and gave an IV dose of lacex. The next day I woke up and couldn't figure out what was different-I could breath. Not normally but better than I ever thought possible. They told my I had CHF and my ejection fraction was 23 o/o.
During all this time I have been unable to work. I applied for SSID. I just got my denial last week. It seems I am able to do sedentary work for 4 hrs. per day according to their findings.
For the last 2 months I have had bouts with breathing and total weakness. Somedays I can barely get around the house. I have been at the emergency room at local hospitals 4 times in the last month and hospitalized twice. The last time was a week ago. Test showed I was having a bad episode of CHF. They did a stress test(chemically-no treadmill). My ejection fraction is down to 15 o/o. I saw the cardiologist at the VA to day. They x'd out my beta blocker and gave a new med to strengthen my heart. I asked him if my heart would get stronger. He said he hopes so.

I feel like I get weaker by the day. I can't work. My wife and I have wiped out our savings to the point where I don't know how we can even pay rent with out my getting disability.
If anyone has advice or encouragement-I could sure use it.
If you got this far-
Thanks
Britt

[This message has been edited by bneal (edited 09-09-2003).]