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Old 07-18-2010, 06:10 AM   #1
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Angry 23 years of Heart Failure & A-Fib & High BP & dealing with nasty reactions to MEDS!

Those who experience little, or no, nasty side effects from taking heart and/or blood pressure medications are among the lucky few.

I can remember when I was first diagnosed with Heart Failure, over 23 years ago. I was in a state of shock. The doctor wrote out five prescriptions for me to take, without giving me any guidance or instructions regarding how or when to take the medications, or what side effects to expect from the medications.

The next morning, I dutifully took the five medications. My very first nasty experience was severe stomach cramping and constipation, which went on for days until I learned to separate the medications by at least an hour.

The second nasty finding regarding the meds was that they were only lowering my blood pressure in the morning. As the day progressed, my blood pressure went to very unhealthy levels.


Well..... anyway, it is 23 years later and it has been 23 years of adjusting meds, either with the help of my cardiologist, or without him knowing. I would prefer to be totally under the guidance of an truly competent Cardiologist, but when that is not particularly possible then I find that I must do what I can do to survive my heart disease and health problems and also survive the medications.

I had finally gotten my meds to work the best for me with minimal side effects. The Digoxin works very well at regulating my heart and preventing tachycardia. The Coreg is supposed to be very effective against Heart Failure and seems to help me deal with my Insulin Resistance.

Well...... in May, I had a root canal. The dentist found quite a bit of infection, that had progressed into my upper jaw. The infection must have been there for quite a while. It took a couple of rounds of Keflex to completely rid my jaw, gums and system of the infection.

With my system rid of a long-time infection, the Coreg started working too well. It lowered my blood pressure and heart rate too much, among other troubling effects from the medication. I am guessing that the infection was causing my adrenals to remain in overdrive, in order to deal with the invading bacteria. Now that the infection is gone, my adrenals have gone back into normal status. This reduces the need for me to surpress my adrenals with Coreg. Good guess? I don't know. Who would I ask? Nobody! There is nobody I can go to.

So....... once again, for the umpteenth time, I am adjusting my meds, by myself, for myself, in order to deal with the latest change to my health. I am stopping the Coreg, completely, because it is slowing my heartrate too much and causing my heart to beat too weakly; and lowering my blood pressure too much.

I am taking Quinapril, in the meantime, to counter the negative effects of Coreg withdrawal. Whether or not I stay on Quinapril will depend upon how well my system tolerates it, and how well it works.

Anyways....... anyone else have problems coping, or tolerating, or working with their medications? Surely there must be many out there, like me, whose medications provide such nasty side effects that they find themselves in a position of having to adjust, or even not take the meds prescribed by their doctors.

Anyone want to chime in on this subject?
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CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Diabetes, Asthma doing great

⇒ Avoid allergic & non-allergic irritants/triggers
⇒ Low calorie ovo-vegetarian diet
⇒ Power walk, weight lifts, pushups
⇒ Coreg 25mg bid

 
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Old 07-25-2010, 09:31 AM   #2
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Re: 23 years of Heart Failure & A-Fib & High BP & dealing with nasty reactions to MED

Hi Machaon, sorry to hear you've been having trouble, but it has to be a good thing to get rid of the infection - after you get everything re-adjusted, you'll be better than ever. I find when I have ear infections (which happens more frequently then I'd like because of allergies), then my heart starts acting up. It usually takes a couple of rounds of antibiotics to get everything to calm down again. The problem is convincing the doctor to let me have an antibiotic - so I hear what your saying about having a good cardiologist to help adjust everything. In my case, I feel I am the only one who is pulling everything together and then trying to convince the docs to give me what I need. Very frustrating. Anyway, I sympathize and hope you are doing better. Sand

 
Old 07-25-2010, 10:36 AM   #3
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Re: 23 years of Heart Failure & A-Fib & High BP & dealing with nasty reactions to MED

Quote:
Originally Posted by sandsprite View Post
Hi Machaon, sorry to hear you've been having trouble, but it has to be a good thing to get rid of the infection - after you get everything re-adjusted, you'll be better than ever.
Thanks for the kind words.

I thought back, trying to figure out how long I could have had that infection. It might have been over ten years. I never used to worry too much about a cavity, especially when they didn't bother me, and did not have too many cavities, since I took very good care of my teeth. The cavity in my molar did not bother me, I thought, so I just let it go. Not smart!

Quote:
I find when I have ear infections (which happens more frequently then I'd like because of allergies), then my heart starts acting up. It usually takes a couple of rounds of antibiotics to get everything to calm down again.
That is a nasty, painful problem!

My allergies used to cause multiple annual sinus infections. I've learned that the infections were the result of damaged membranes within my nasal areas and sinuses, and that the best way to stop the annual infection problem was via curing those damaged membranes. Once the membranes were totally healed, I no longer got infections as a result of my sinuses reacting to my allergies.

I wonder if there is some similarity to your ear problems? Where do you get the infections, the Middle Ear?

Quote:
The problem is convincing the doctor to let me have an antibiotic - so I hear what your saying about having a good cardiologist to help adjust everything. In my case, I feel I am the only one who is pulling everything together and then trying to convince the docs to give me what I need. Very frustrating.
Doctors do not want difficult problems, or health problems outside their immediate realm of knowledge. They usually deny anything that might result in extra work for them, or that might make them appear less like gods. How many times have we heard doctors say that "Your symptoms can't be because of the medicines that I prescribe." or "Your symptoms are in your head, or the result of stress." or just make you feel inconsequential?

Best of luck getting your doctors to do their job providing you the tools (antibiotics) that you need.

Quote:
Anyway, I sympathize and hope you are doing better. Sand
As you can see, your post really hit home with me. It has been a very frustrating 23+ years dealing with so-called Heart and Health experts who really should have selected a different trade other than in medicine. Of course, if a lot of these Doctors had selected an Auto Mechanic career instead of a Doctor career, they would be messing up someone's car out there, instead of someone's health!

Regards....... and thanks for your supportive post!
__________________
CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Diabetes, Asthma doing great

⇒ Avoid allergic & non-allergic irritants/triggers
⇒ Low calorie ovo-vegetarian diet
⇒ Power walk, weight lifts, pushups
⇒ Coreg 25mg bid

 
Old 07-27-2010, 06:06 AM   #4
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Re: 23 years of Heart Failure & A-Fib & High BP & dealing with nasty reactions to MED

Quote:
Originally Posted by Machaon View Post
... So....... once again, for the umpteenth time, I am adjusting my meds, by myself, for myself, in order to deal with the latest change to my health. I am stopping the Coreg, completely, because it is slowing my heartrate too much and causing my heart to beat too weakly; and lowering my blood pressure too much.
I am now two days back on Coreg 6.25mg, qd; and have stopped taking the Ace Inhibitor. My blood pressure not only went up too much, but I lost all of the other great benefits of taking Coreg. Coreg is a wonderful, curative medication, but it does come with it's unpleasant side effects, such as slow, weak pulse, ankle and foot swelling, tiredness, and weakness.

I am going to try 3.125mg on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, along with the 6.25mg the rest of the week, which will average around 5mg Coreg, and see how well that does. I am hoping that it reduces the side effects, while keeping the BP at very healthy levels.

I don't understand how anyone can just take their Heart/BP medications without being very frustrated because of the nasty side effects. And then, to boot, when we go back to our doctors, they invariably state that the meds couldn't possibly be doing that to us, that is must be our fault, our stress, our anxiety, our imagination that is causing our nasty symptoms.
__________________
CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Diabetes, Asthma doing great

⇒ Avoid allergic & non-allergic irritants/triggers
⇒ Low calorie ovo-vegetarian diet
⇒ Power walk, weight lifts, pushups
⇒ Coreg 25mg bid

Last edited by Machaon; 07-27-2010 at 06:08 AM.

 
Old 08-02-2010, 06:12 AM   #5
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Re: 23 years of Heart Failure & A-Fib & High BP & dealing with nasty reactions to MED

Quote:
Originally Posted by Machaon View Post
I am now two days back on Coreg 6.25mg, qd; and have stopped taking the Ace Inhibitor.
Well, my experience with Coreg 6.25mg did not last too long. My ankles and feet swelled up so I reduced the Coreg to 3.125mg per day. This is my fourth day of 3.125mg Coreg and FINALLY my feet and ankles are back to normal.

I have also decided to take Quinapril only three times per week, and see how well that does.

My blood pressure is also back down to very healthy levels.

I don't have much exercise tolerance, but I am hoping that, once my body adjusts to the new medication dose, my exercise tolerance will improve. (I hope, I hope).

Quote:
I don't understand how anyone can just take their Heart/BP medications without being very frustrated because of the nasty side effects. And then, to boot, when we go back to our doctors, they invariably state that the meds couldn't possibly be doing that to us, that is must be our fault, our stress, our anxiety, our imagination that is causing our nasty symptoms.
I had been taking Coreg, as high as 24mg per day, and NEVER had any foot or ankle swelling from it. Then I had a root canal, discovered a long standing gum and jaw infection. After the root canal and after antibiotics cured that long standing infection, the Coreg did not work the same way as before. It caused the uncomfortable, scary swelling of my feet and ankles. It took me several weeks before I linked the Coreg to the swelling.

Fortunately, I can still take my beloved Coreg, but this time at a much reduced dose of 3.125mg per day. It's better than nothing. I want to take advantage of this miraculous medication. And..... a recently completed clinical trial in Japan showed that reduced doses of Coreg, even down to 2mg per day, were just as effective as the larger doses. In Japan, the doctor prescribed doses of Coreg are much smalled than the US.

The good news is that my prescription is at 12mg per day, so one bottle of Coreg will supply me for the year for $10.
__________________
CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Diabetes, Asthma doing great

⇒ Avoid allergic & non-allergic irritants/triggers
⇒ Low calorie ovo-vegetarian diet
⇒ Power walk, weight lifts, pushups
⇒ Coreg 25mg bid

Last edited by Machaon; 08-02-2010 at 06:14 AM.

 
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