fluid in chest cavity after heart surgery, HELP!
I'm hoping someone with a similar experience will be able to give my family some badly needed words of encouragement.
My 62 year old mother-in-law had open heart surgery 3 weeks ago. She had a faulty valve replaced; it was damaged when she was in her 20s due to a virus or something like that. Other than her heart, she's in good health.
A week ago, she had over 2 litres of fluid drained from her chest cavity. It was causing her shortness of breath and lots of coughing. When she tries to lay down to sleep, her heart pounds heavily and she is short of breath. She is on Lasix, a diuretic, which doesn't seem to help much. She's getting another x-ray again tomorrow, she will probably need the fluid drained yet again. After she got the fluid drained, she was feeling much better for about a day, then the coughing started all over again.
Does anyone know how long this will go on for or anything we can do to help her? If she keeps having to go back to the hospital to get the fluid drained yet again, she's going to go crazy. This is really affecting her sleep and she is suffering so much, she is up coughing all night and is exhausted. If anyone has any words of encouragement for her, I would be happy to pass them on to her.