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  • Constrictive Pericarditis?

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    Old 11-29-2006, 07:10 AM   #1
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    Constrictive Pericarditis?


    I'm new to this group and am very happy to have found it. I would please like to hear the opinions of other members from the group.

    I'm a 46 year old woman with family history of heart disease. My grandfather died at 38 from coronary heart disease, my mother had her first heart attack around my age, had quaddropple bypass surgery in her 50's and died at 63. My uncled died shortly after his bypass, in his early 50's and my aunt just had tripple by passs surgery, she is 63.

    Needless to say I am very scared. I've always had palpitations and suffer from high anxiety. Many stress tests, and echo cardiograms show no mvp.

    Last March I had bad chest pain and couldn't breath laying down. I went to my cardiologist and and echocardiogram showed I had pericarditist. I was just recently sick with a chest cold so he figured it was from that. A few months later I went back for another test and he told me the fluid was gone, but I had some "scarring".
    He didnt' explain it furture.

    Does this mean I have constrictive pericarditist? He didnt' use those words. Nor did he suggest any treatment.
    The summer went by and I was fine. This past September I've been having almost constant chest pressure and difficulty breathing. I also suffer from this sensation of a lump in my throat. My doctor put me on acid reflux medication and sent me for a nuclear stress test and another echo cardiogram. I see my cardio doc tomorrow to find the results.

    I'm really scared now. I have always had difficulty breathing when exerting myself. Especially walking up hills. NO tolerance to exercise, yet often full of energy. When doing the nuclear stress test, I got up to 178 on the tread mill but then started having coughing fits for air and chest pressure. The technician there said I might have exercise induced asthma.
    For the past 2 weeks I've been sick again with "fluish" symptoms. It's getting worse to.

    I am wondering if I have a serious heart problem. I've always had hormonal problems. Could my symptoms be from that? I am perimenopausal.

    Sorry for the long post. I'm just so worried!


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    Old 11-29-2006, 10:42 AM   #2
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    Re: Constrictive Pericarditis?

    Hi Gina,

    Pericarditis is the inflammation of the membrane surrounding the heart, and there can be a buildup of fluids between the heart muscle and this membrane sac effecting normal filling and pumping of blood.

    Restrictive pericarditis indicates the heart chamber is restricted during diastole (filling phase) as there is some loss of elasticity of the chamber due to scarring. If appropriate and warranted there is an operation procedure (ablation) to remove the scar tissue.

    Old 11-29-2006, 11:03 AM   #3
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    Re: Constrictive Pericarditis?


    The results of the tests that you get tomorrow will shed a lot of light on the situation.

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