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Old 07-04-2005, 02:34 AM   #1
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Breathlessness after CABAG

hi all

wonder if anyone can help, i am writing on behalf of my father who had triple bypass 7 weeks ago, after the op it was discovered that he is in atrial flutter, they tried to correct this about a week after the cabag, by performing cardioversion, this was not successful because when anesthetic was given, his bp crashed and he ended back in intensive care.
anyhow they eventually released him with medication, now, going by the book he should be walking about a mile a day by now.....he becomes very breathless getting up from the chair....he is trying to fight it but it is overwhelming for him and he is not usually one to let things beat him.....there is no clear answer from the gp...he has a check up with the hospital doctor in a couple of weeks.
Can this be "normal" to feel so breathless nearly 2 months since the operation?

thanks in advance

brina

 
Old 07-04-2005, 07:34 AM   #2
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

Quote:
Originally Posted by brina
hi all

wonder if anyone can help, i am writing on behalf of my father who had triple bypass 7 weeks ago, after the op it was discovered that he is in atrial flutter, they tried to correct this about a week after the cabag, by performing cardioversion, this was not successful because when anesthetic was given, his bp crashed and he ended back in intensive care.
anyhow they eventually released him with medication, now, going by the book he should be walking about a mile a day by now.....he becomes very breathless getting up from the chair....he is trying to fight it but it is overwhelming for him and he is not usually one to let things beat him.....there is no clear answer from the gp...he has a check up with the hospital doctor in a couple of weeks.
Can this be "normal" to feel so breathless nearly 2 months since the operation?

thanks in advance

brina
Your father might consider calling the doctor's office and telling them about his breathing problems. They might want to see him earlier. Or..... if he has to check with his GP first, he could call his GP and demand that he be seen earlier.

Breathing problems caused after only slight exertion, indicate, to me, that your father's heart is not working correctly. It could be a reaction to his atrial flutter medication, or it could be that the medicine is not working good enough. What med(s) did they put him on for the atrial flutter?

Does your father have nitro available? When my heart doesn't want to behave itself, and I get breathing problems, I'll pop a nitro under my tongue and it usually helps.

Is your father on a blood pressure medicine? Does your father check his own blood pressure or heart rate?

 
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Old 07-05-2005, 01:28 AM   #3
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

hi beerzoids

thanks for replying, he is taking amiodarone for the flutter, not sure of dose, and he does have a nitro spray tho he has never used it, he is also taking warfarin, atenolol, perindopril, furosemide, i think thats it and sorry for any spelling mistakes. he doesnt have any equipment for checking his b.p. or heart rate............his last appointment about a week ago, with the community nurse from the hospital that did the operation, was held at our local hospital and she had a doctor reveiw him and take an xray of his chest, but they wont be available for another week or two...

i know there is something not right, and no one seems to be picking up on it.

ty

brina

 
Old 07-06-2005, 04:35 PM   #4
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

Quote:
Originally Posted by brina
hi beerzoids

thanks for replying, he is taking amiodarone for the flutter, not sure of dose, and he does have a nitro spray tho he has never used it, he is also taking warfarin, atenolol, perindopril, furosemide, i think thats it and sorry for any spelling mistakes.
I am also on a load of heart meds. I couldn't take them all at the same time, or I would have interactions. I separate my meds by up to three hours. I use my PC to remind me when it is pill time. It is a royal pain to separate meds, but otherwise I'll get unpleasant symptoms. I also have to watch what foods or drinks I have since some foods interact with some of my meds.

Your father might consider separating his meds.

Quote:
he doesnt have any equipment for checking his b.p. or heart rate............
For someone with significant heart disease, a Blood Pressure Monitor is a must. Another critical piece of equipment is the stethoscope, which allows the heart patient to get familar with their own heart beat so that they know when their heart beat is under stress, and can take appropriate action when the heart is under stress.

Quote:
his last appointment about a week ago, with the community nurse from the hospital that did the operation, was held at our local hospital and she had a doctor reveiw him and take an xray of his chest, but they wont be available for another week or two...

i know there is something not right, and no one seems to be picking up on it.

ty

brina
It's sad that our medical system cannot or will not pay more attention to our health problems.

Patients need to be more proactive than ever. My cardiologist is very busy and can't spend a lot of time on each patient, but he will work with his patients. I've taken about 16,000 Blood Pressure readings over the past seven years, and have kept daily comments regarding my symptoms. With this information, my cardiologist has given me increases or decreases in my meds, and allowed me to try different meds, as long as I carefully monitor the results.

I've got significant heart disease. I've had to learn how to listen to my heart, and to tell when my heart has a stressed heart beat, how stressed it is, or if it is a normal heart beat. The results of these efforts have really helped me to improve.

Last edited by Machaon; 07-06-2005 at 04:38 PM.

 
Old 07-08-2005, 02:30 AM   #5
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

hi beerzoids

thank u for your help, i have suggested all you have mentioned to my father, it is good advice, they may try the cardioversion again i hope it works out this time but i am worried......bestest wishes to you......brina

 
Old 07-10-2005, 07:35 PM   #6
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

brina:

Does your dad have atrial flutter or atrial fibrillation?

I had six bypasses in 1981, and developed paroxymal atrial fibrillation in 1996. When I'm in afib, I have the same type symptoms your dad seems to have, including breathlessness and angina. When not in afib, I can do anything I want within reason including working all day..

The cardiologist did two electric cardioversions on me, neither of which lasted very long - in fact, the last one lasted two weeks before afib returned. So he put me on a beta blocker called Sotalol. That was two years ago and I've had no more episodes.

I feel for your dad. I'm no doctor, but it seems odd that atrial flutter would cause the extreme symptoms you cite. I have occasional PVC's and atrial flutter, neither of which bother me much. Can you take him to a GOOD cardiologist to evaluate what's going on?

I've had excellent cardiologists associated with one of the excellent medical centers in Atlanta, and am so very grateful for their nearness.

I realize this probably isn't much help to you, but I would hope you could get your dad in to see a cardiologist, and soon.

Best wishes,
Bill

 
Old 07-12-2005, 01:00 AM   #7
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

hi bill

thank u for your reply, i have, only yesterday found out the cause of his breathlessneses, he got the result back from the xray which showed up fluid around one of his lungs. they are going to drain it off soon when the level of warfarin is ok.
so u r right in saying that the a. flutter is prob not the cause, or seems extreme.

we were told in the first instance that he was in atrial fib. but when i asked the doctor in intensive care ' is he still in a.fib. she corrected me and said it is a. flutter.....gets confusing.

im hoping this is going to solve it for him, and i take on board all advice given.

thanks again

best wishes

brina

 
Old 07-12-2005, 05:19 AM   #8
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

brina,
The breathlessness from the slightest exercise, at lirst blush, implies that one or more of the bypasses is not doing the job and a portion of the heart is starved from nutrients.
Looking over that drug litany though, I'm inclined to think that it might be caused by that shipload of drugs he's taking. If I took them, I would not get breathless getting out of a chair, I would not be able to MOVE from the chair.

Amiodarone is a dangerous drug:
First line from the government site:
Quote:
IMPORTANT WARNING:
Amiodarone may cause lung disease that can be serious or life-threatening.Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had any type of lung disease. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: fever, shortness of breath, wheezing, cough, coughing up blood, and any other breathing problems
It also sounds like some of the drugs are leftover angina cures. The CABAG should have made them unnecessary.

Lay all this info at the feet of his cardiologist and have him rethink what's going on. Often when the surgery is done, they wash their hands (in more ways then one!)

 
Old 07-14-2005, 01:06 AM   #9
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Re: Breathlessness after CABAG

hi lenin

thanks for your input, i will question about the amiodarone , they are very scary side effects.

brina

 
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