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Old 05-16-2008, 02:11 PM   #1
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happybunny HB User
printzmetal's angina, how risky?

I had angina a few years ago despite healthy lifestyle...found to have very high cholesterol and after tests was found to have bad blockages in coronary arteries and had 3 stents put in, 2005 aged 54 female. Done well afterwards, no angina with exercise.

For last 18 months have had about 15 episodes of angina at rest i.e. I wake up to severe chest pain typically or have had other episodes at rest, have had to stop 2 phone calls due to this, just sitting down. Only one episode was after exercise - running up the stairs. I didn't tell anyone for about 9 months but my lipid consultant was one of those who asks probing questions and I let it slip about these episodes. She said she would send me to a cardiologist but she obviously forgot to do it. Then when I saw her next in March she said she would send me to cardiologist but I have heard nothing. My husband knows nothing about all this - he is a worrier so I don't intend to tell him.

I saw the gp about something else and they asked re heart stuff so I said about it and they said it was Prinzmetal's angina probably and seemed happy that I would see cardiologist. But nothing happens, she's probably forgotten again....

On one level I don't really care. If I had a heart attack proper it would cure my allodynia/nerve pain once and for all. If you don't know what allodynia is you are blessed. In a lot of ways I would wish for a heart attack just to end the allodynia. But on another level I think of my family. I haven't told my husband about these episodes at all as
1. he would worry. and
2. I'm not sure if I want to call for help if it turns out to be the "real thing". When I get the episodes I lie there and am not sure what I will do.

I realise I am somewhat different from the people who panic at any chest pain. I have to balance my horrific allodynia with survival. But just out of interest, what are the risks of having episodes of Prinzmetal's? In a way I want to be told it is very risky. I could never take an overdose because of duty/love/respect for my family but I would be actually reassured to know that I had a good chance of a shorter life by natural means. I would stop the aspirin if I knew it would secretly promote a heart attack but I am so scared of having a stroke that I daren't. If I had a stroke I would be so vulnerable with the allodynia that I could not even contemplate what survival would be like. Being in hospital after my angioplasty was hell. The nerve pain was out of this world as I was susceptible to fans, windows open, draughts with no-one understanding what it was like for me. If I had a heart attack I would hold out until the bitter end as regards pain - just to not go into that environment again.

So what is with Prinzmetal's? I know it is spasm of the coronary arteries. I know I have further blockages which were not as bad as the stented arteries. Am I likely to have a heart attack or similar?

 
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Old 05-17-2008, 03:07 PM   #2
Bill 1950
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Re: printzmetal's angina, how risky?

HappyBunny:

I haven't had Prinzmetal's Angina, but have had plenty of the stable type.

I think the best advice is for you to make an appointment with a good cardiologist as soon as you can. If your primary doctor is forgetting to make such an appointment, I'd call him about once a day to remind him. You need to be proactive on something like this.

Medicines used for Prinzmetal's angina seem to be nitroglycerine spray, long lasting nitro, and calcium channel blockers. Again, I'd want to see a cardiologist as quickly as I could.

There seems to be a lot of forgettin' going on at your doctors' offices.

Bill

 
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