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Old 07-19-2006, 10:18 AM   #1
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DB1973 HB User
Anxiety Due to Surgery, Stress, Divorce etc.

I am not sure exactly what my purpose of posting it. I don't know whether I want to vent, speak my mind, or look for support.

Back in May, I had to have emergency heart surgery for a dissected aorta. On top of that since December I have been going through the process of getting a divorce. Although parent, my kids, and other family members have been very supportive during my recuperation I have had a great sense of being unsupported otherwise.

About a day after the divorce I began to have panic attacks. About a week into it, I had a major one at work where I was in the bathroom stall sobbing, convinced that my aorta was not fixed and that I was going to either die or have to go through all of it again. I ended up calling the doctor that afternoon and getting a prescription for an anti-anxiety medication.

Well, it has been a couple of weeks and I am still having the occasional panic attack and I do feel like I am running a constant low-grade level of anxiety. I don't want to be constantly popping pills to take care of things, but I don't exactly want to be stoic and tough it out either. I am just getting a little frustrated. Any comments would be appreciated.

 
Old 07-19-2006, 02:55 PM   #2
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Re: Anxiety Due to Surgery, Stress, Divorce etc.

Hi DB1973 i feel for you, my problems also began during a stressful situation years ago but i let mine get a bit out of control, not seeking the right help at the time, i made excuses money, ashamed ect...boy how i wish i had a time machine. what your going through is a normal response due to what your going through, its very possible it will pass on its own but if it is as you stated thearpy may help!! drugs alone sometimes do a good job but they dont correct the problem. try exercise, relaxation tapes, reading ect.. mine is working on something, everyones different as far as what really gets rid of tension and anxiety. dwelling on it is a big no no, not saying ignore your feelings but accept them and move on,im sure your doc has checked your heart valve and if he has and approves its ok, accept it as it is FIXED, no second guessing.feelings of unsupportive "alone"while recup could be a sign of depression,common after surgerys/divorces ect.. on your next dr visit if your still anxious, tell him/her everything sleep,eating habit.....best of luck to you, get well and keep us posted. hyper 79

 
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:27 AM   #3
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Re: Anxiety Due to Surgery, Stress, Divorce etc.

I was really hoping for more of a response to this. Last week I had a wonderful 2 am panic attack that sent me scrambling for the Xanax. Although the full blown attacks aren't too common, I am feeling like I am constantly running a low level of physical anxiety without the mental anxiety. It is getting old, especially since I can't seem to make it stop.

 
Old 08-04-2006, 11:55 AM   #4
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Re: Anxiety Due to Surgery, Stress, Divorce etc.

Hi no one is going to have the answer you looking for, if we did we would all be cured, ive been major depressed for 2 years and most everyday have persistant anxiety but im learning to do my best to cope,if not no telling where i would be?trying to make it stop is actually fighting it, do some research on overcoming anxiety,i overcome fullblown panic attacks i had daily,hyperventilating ect.. and feeling stupid setting in the ER after going so much.knock on wood i have not had one in a year and a half.im working on coping with the anxiety,thats all we all can do.you have another response,maybe not much but im here.

 
Old 08-04-2006, 12:48 PM   #5
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Re: Anxiety Due to Surgery, Stress, Divorce etc.

Well, the good news is that people who become anxious due to life events (and you had some extremely stressful stuff happening at once----open heart surgery----that is major!) are, at least according to some researchers, more likely to overcome their anxiety than people who just seem to be innately anxious or those who have a strong genetic propensity for anxiety. I've read that many heart patients become anxious and have to take antidepressants and benzos for a while after their procedures, people who haven't been particularly anxious before. I'll bet once time passes and you overcome the shock and sadness of having a couple of major life events occur at once, you'll feel much better, but it's not going to happen overnight, and you may need more medication or therapy, but hang in there. This stuff sucks, and posts like yours are hard to answer because, as the previous poster stated, none of us really have any definite cure. Give yourself some time. It takes a while for the shock of all this to wear off. I've been anxious since childhood, but my anxiety was greatly exacerbated by a pulmonary embolism 4 years ago. I kept wondering if the docs were treating me properly, I worried about every bad outcome, I worried that it would happen again. After about a year, a year and a half, I realized that something bad had happened to me, but I was ok and I could get on with my life, and my anxiety did settle somewhat. Take care.

 
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