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Thread: A recliner to sleep in?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Northern New Mexico

    Default A recliner to sleep in?

    My wife has heard that it would be helpful to have a recliner to sllep in after I have open heart surgery to replace my Aorta valve. If this is so, we need to buy one. I won't be using it except for this purpose, and was wondering if anyone would like to recommend a particular model?

  2. #2
    Karlynn Guest


    I wish I'd known about the recliner suggestion after my surgery. Many of our members find it helpful to sleep in them for at least the first several days at home. I had about 6 pillows in bed propping me up afte my OHS.

    I don't know about models - but my suggestion would be that you get one with a mechanism that's easy to operate. You're not going to want to use any body force to recline the chair. I would also think that leather, or a fabric that's easy to slide on would be helpful too so that you can move in it easily.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    snowy - Sharpsburg, Ga USA


    It is not necessary to have one. I got by. I was not in my own home for the first month and got by without one, tho I bet it would have been easier than trying to get out of bed from a prone position (ouch!). But if you get one, try it out at the store to make sure you can pull the lever easily - or push the button. Mine, at home, were laz-y-boys and I think those are easiest - however, my bro has one and has trouble pulling/pushing the lever. If you buy one for use during recovery, you will fall in love with it and keep it forever. mY FURNIture store owner says these chairs are the most used piece of furniture in the house.
    My philosophy:
    No matter where you are, who you are with, what you are doing, enjoy every moment, every day. Blessins.........

  4. #4
    Kristi in MD Guest


    I don't have personal knowledge of this but I do know a person who had valve replacement surgery and he said he slept well in a recliner post surgery - actually better than when we slept in bed.

    Kind of makes sense because I would imagine that laying flat could have the potential for much pain and pull on stitches/staples.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Sarasota, FL


    A recliner would have been great. I spent the first week or so at home sleeping on the family room sofa, semi-propped up with an assortment of pillows.
    When I eventually got back into bed I used a wedge pillow that some friends loaned to me for a month or so until I could manage to lay flat without pain.

    "It doesn't get easier, you just get faster" - Greg LeMond

    Mark U in Sarasota. FL
    Congenital Bicuspid Aortic Valve
    27mm St. Jude, 12-15-00

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    North Alabama


    If you don't want to pay NEW prices, check the Want Ads in your local paper. I found a used one for $75 that was in good condition.

    You may still want to check the stores first to get a feel for the different types, features, and prices.

    For the first 2 or 3 weeks following surgery, your sternum MAY be able to move slightly which can be 'uncomfortable' at times. Sleeping on your side is often not comfortable until the sternum begins to heal and becomes more rigid.

    'AL Capshaw'

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Coastal Carolina

    Default A Recliner for Sure

    My thoughtful family got me a recliner that was waiting for me when I came back from surgery, along with a new laptop and wireless Internet. I happily wallowed in all this pampering. The recliner was, well, if not exactly a life-saver then certainly a rest-saver. I could not lie down comfortably for weeks. With the recliner I could get at least a few hours of sleep off and on, with ice water nearby and my heart pillow snuggled against me.

    My grown son tested out particular varieties for me. I don't know that brand is particularly important, but trying them out would be helpful. They picked out one that spins around 360 degrees, and now my little granddaughter has the greatest time taking merry-go-rounds in it.

    Best wishes to you on your preparations.
    Medtronics Freestyle Aortic Root Heart Valve (Porcine)
    02/16/05 Inova Fairfax, Virginia (Dr. Speir) (senior fitness blog)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Wheelersburg, OH


    My parents got me a fancy new automatic La-Z-Boy recliner, and it was fabulous. It really helped those nights I wasn't comfortable laying down in bed. I highly recommend it!

    Endocarditis - November 2004
    Mitral Valve Repair - May 12, 2005
    Pericardiocentesis - June 16, 2005
    Pericardial Window Surgery - July 13, 2005
    Dr. Benjamin Sun
    Ross Heart Hospital in Columbus, Ohio

  9. #9
    momshell7 Guest


    We got a recliner for my husband before he has his surgery and he really liked having it. We aleady had one in the living room but it was too big to fit in the bedroom. He found a smaller one that fit nicely beside our bed, that way I could sleep on his side of the bed and have him close to me. It made us both feel better. I was there if he needed anything during the night. Another thing you may want to investigate is a heart hugger. It is a device you wear like a vest and it has two handles in the middle. You wear it 24/7 during the first weeks post op. When you cough, sneeze, get up or down etc. you squeeze the handles and it tightens up around you making it easier to do things. It is like having someone give you a hug to hold your inside together. He recieved his at the hospital but as we have learned, not many hospitals have them as they are relativly new. You can purchase them online at their website. If you want more information on the heart hugger from people on VR do a search for heart hugger. It's a great device.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Central NJ


    We have a great recliner, and I used it during the day, but had no need for it at night. It's good for daytime inthat it keeps your head elevated, which may create less likelihood of fluids gathering in your lungs.

    If you're sleeping prone in the hospital bed, you can probably sleep just fine in your own bed. Beware also of sweats, when sleeping, as some of us developed severe sweating (as in soaked), especially at night. If you have a leather recliner, you moght want to put a pad on it.

    The Heart Hugger or Heart Pillows are also optional. Some people swear by them, others (such as myself) do fine without them.

    Best wishes,
    Bob H

    "No Eternal Reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn..." Jim Morrison

    Click here to View the Glossary of VR Terms and Acronyms

    I am not a Medical Professional. Aortic Valve Replacement (Medtronic Mosaic) on 4/6/04, at Robert Wood Johnson UH in New Brunswick, NJ. AVR again (St. Jude Biocor) on 08/25/09 at St. Michael's MC in Newark, NJ. Both performed by Dr. Tyrone Krause, a true Zen Master Mechanic in the world of valve replacement surgery.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2005
    New Hampshire

    Default heart hugger

    Thank you Michelle for the website for Heart Huggers. I had heard it discussed many times here but going to the site finally gave me the "picture." Seems like a Good Thing! Barbara

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Pinehurst, NC

    Thumbs up

    I loved my recliner for the few several days at home but did sleep in bed at night with a lot of pillows. Now, almost two years later, I still love my recliner .

    Rheumatic Heart Disease
    St.Judes Mitral Valve
    Heart Port procedure
    Dr. D.Glower, surgeon
    Duke University Hosp. 8/25/03

    John 1:5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

  13. #13
    McCln Guest


    The thing is having something to sit up in during the adjustment period ater coming home. I had a chair my mother had a recliner that was also a lift chair. Made things easy for a time. I even slept sitting up in the chair, was easier trying to get back in bed, which was hard to do. You get what you feel is good for your particular situation. One with the lift makes it easier gettin into the chair. It has a control panel. Good luck.

  14. #14
    momshell7 Guest


    Glad you checked out the heart hugger. My husband has had two OHS, his first was when 16 and the second at 37. He had the heart hugger for the second one, which was last October and he said that his recovery and everthing was so much better this time. He credits a lot of it to the heart hugger. Yes you will survive without one but it will make things a lot easier. I know those who have had surgery without it don't have as much faith in how much better it make recovery but just ask someone who has used one. No reason to try and be tough and just suck it up if you can have something to make things less painful. It is definatly worth the money. You may also want to contact the hopspital your husband is having surgery at to see if they provide them or not before purchasing one.

    If you have any more questions please feel free to email or PM me or my husband, his user name on here is twoboysdad.


  15. #15
    Bionic Valve Tim Guest


    The day I came home from my hospital stay, a friend brought over an older recliner for me to use. I'm not exaggerating when I say that I would have been absolutely miserable without it. My wife threw a sheet over it (so that we could wash it frequently) and I spent the vast majority of my first week in it. I continued to sleep in the recliner for a couple of weeks, actually. This particular model (sorry I don't know the brand, it was a cheapie) would recline to almost horizontal, so it made for a good transition back into the bed.


  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Atwood, Ontario Canada


    I would recommend a recliner when you come home from the hospital.
    Congenital, bicuspid Aortic valve,Replaced Feb, 2004 with CarboMedics Mechanical valve
    By Dr Salasidis at St Marys General in Kitchener, Ontario Canada

  17. #17
    Paul_N Guest


    It was helpful, but obviously isn't required. I found that I had to have a family member acutally recline the chair for me after I was in it and had to also put it down when I wanted up ... that handle thing on the side. I did sleep in it the first few days after returning home, but the bed is where the rest came into play. For reference, ours is a Lazy Boy.

    Karlynn described the pillow propping she did, which is what we ended up doing. That seemed to work best for me.

    Good luck.

  18. #18
    Georgia Guest


    I think my recliner was the single most important thing I had that made recovery easier. I went to lazyboy and tried out a lot of them - I'm short and most are not comfortable for me. I about lived in it for 6 weeks. Go for it.

  19. #19
    TjCarpenter Guest


    Quote Originally Posted by Georgia
    I think my recliner was the single most important thing I had that made recovery easier. I went to lazyboy and tried out a lot of them - I'm short and most are not comfortable for me. I about lived in it for 6 weeks. Go for it.
    Hi there,

    I am two weeks post op and my recliner was a MAJOR part of my feeling better faster... I slept in it for the first week and a half. I too needed some assistance getting it to (un-recline) at first. There is a motorized option for many that would make this a non-issue BUT would probably add $200.00 to the purchase. I am sooooooooo glad that my wife bought me this chair! As for leather and all.... I agree. Mine is a faux suede and did make moving around a bit more effort.

    Best of luck to you!


  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    dallas, tx


    if you are going to buy one just for ohs i would have to say save your will have other medical bills to it really just depends on how things are set up. i stayed at my dads and planned on sleeping on his recliner for the next week but ended up more comfortable on the couch...with a lot of pillows. are going to need to be propped up like you were on the hospital if you have the pillows to re-create that...than do that....if you feel a recliner will support you better than go with that. i took over the big screen in the living room and moved the coffee table over by the couch...made the remote, water, and all of that stuff easier to get i had a better path to the bathroom...all of the basic small stuff you do not consider a big deal...take into consideration the first week you get just makes things easier. but you are going to pull through this and feel better in no time...i was bouncing off the walls after the 4th day home from the hospital.
    bicuspid aortic valve & ascending aortic anysm.
    Medtronic Freestyle Aortic Root Heart Valve 29mm
    Presby. of Dallas - Dr. William Ryan
    May 31, 2005...@ the age of 31

  21. #21
    Marge Guest


    Some people obviously need a recliner, others simply find it is more comfortable to sleep in one than in a bed after the surgery. I don't know how you can tell ahead of time! I found I didn't need one after my mitral valve surgery. I slept quite well in a regular bed. Used a lot of pillows (up to six at first) and discarded them one by one.

    Getting in and out of bed can be a hassle at first. At the hospital, they should be teaching you how to roll out of bed and into it with the least amount of pain and strain; it was the first thing the physical therapist taught me once I got out of ICU and to the step-down ward.

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