After your surgery, what are some of the things that you found out that surprised you

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JohnStone

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Joined
Nov 12, 2022
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North Carolina
Practice some simple hand signals with your spouse/caregiver before surgery. I was surprised how long my husband was awake with the breathing tube (and unable to verbally communicate). We had the “OK” & thumbs up/down, but that was it. Writing was out, as his arms were somewhat restrained to prevent him from messing with the tube. It was very frustrating for him to try and communicate his needs.
 

Yankeeman2

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Joined
Oct 16, 2019
Messages
20
Probably the main thing that surprised me was that my life didn't really change that much. (I had artificial aortic valve installed about 15 years ago at Brigham and Women's in Boston.) There were some minor changes in diet and had to take warfarin daily and self test once a week. No big deal. Everybody seems to think the valve makes a noise, but I never really heard anything. I don't even set off metal detectors.
 

CindyBain

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Oct 13, 2020
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Ponte Vedra, FL
Practice some simple hand signals with your spouse/caregiver before surgery. I was surprised how long my husband was awake with the breathing tube (and unable to verbally communicate). We had the “OK” & thumbs up/down, but that was it. Writing was out, as his arms were somewhat restrained to prevent him from messing with the tube. It was very frustrating for him to try and communicate his needs.
Great idea!! This reminded me... my husband and I have signals, one hand squeeze for no, 2 for yes, and 3 for I love you. He said when I was first in ICU and before I was fully awake, he said I love you to me and I squeezed my eyes tight 3 times!! I still smile when I think of this. I have no recollection of it at all.
 

Deepak khanka

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 24, 2021
Messages
80
Hi All
Need advise / any one has experianced this
8 months post AVR. Now have an On-x valve. I did my echo in July 2022 , 3 months post surgery and by LVEF was 53% . Recent echo done on 01/12/22 showed EF 40-45%. Wondering why ef is going down.
Any advise will be much appreciated. thanks
 

Dodgy Ticker

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Joined
May 3, 2020
Messages
73
Location
France (unfortunately)
For me, two surprises..
1. I was STILL alive, and
2. My Emotions. Since my surgery, despite being a somewhat bullish and boorish 60 year old, I tear-up at the slightest twinkle. Apparently this is a known side-effect, and in truth its not an issue, but it can get a bit frustrating at times
 

Uni&Suki

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Supporting Member
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Nov 27, 2022
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10
Location
USA, Iowa City
Hi All
Need advise / any one has experianced this
8 months post AVR. Now have an On-x valve. I did my echo in July 2022 , 3 months post surgery and by LVEF was 53% . Recent echo done on 01/12/22 showed EF 40-45%. Wondering why ef is going down.
Any advise will be much appreciated. thanks
Hi,
This sounds disturbing! I can tell you that Echo (cardiac ultrasound) is a very operator dependant procedure, which means it depends on the person doing the echo, and maybe the machine itself! I would not panic that much especially if you don't have symptoms and request your doctor to repeat the echo in 6-12 months.
Good luck :)
 

Deepak khanka

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 24, 2021
Messages
80
Hi,
This sounds disturbing! I can tell you that Echo (cardiac ultrasound) is a very operator dependant procedure, which means it depends on the person doing the echo, and maybe the machine itself! I would not panic that much especially if you don't have symptoms and request your doctor to repeat the echo in 6-12 months.
Good luck :)
Hi A
Many Thanks this really helps. No symptoms by gods grace.
I will repeat echo in 6 months 🙏
 

tom in MO

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Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
1,994
Location
MO USA
For me, two surprises..
1. I was STILL alive, and
2. My Emotions. Since my surgery, despite being a somewhat bullish and boorish 60 year old, I tear-up at the slightest twinkle. Apparently this is a known side-effect, and in truth its not an issue, but it can get a bit frustrating at times
I had the same problem with emotions. It can get you in trouble at work, you get too emotional over things others don't care about. Be careful at weddings and funerals. For me it's subsided but lasted just not as strong.
 

chebag

Member
Joined
Dec 20, 2021
Messages
18
I had the same problem with emotions. It can get you in trouble at work, you get too emotional over things others don't care about. Be careful at weddings and funerals. For me it's subsided but lasted just not as strong.
I had this experience too, 100%. Depression and PTSD-like symptoms are not uncommon after heart surgery and are well-documented in the literature.

I think we all have to contend with the fear of getting opened up again, or of having another heart issue. Talking to somebody about it or coming to a forum like this is a great remedy though. I feel lucky to have it.
 
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