Chest tightness/numbness/hypersensitivity

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BasinBoy25

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Feb 5, 2020
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Does anyone have experience or the problem of chest tightness and numbness and hypersensitivity all at the same time? I had open heart valve and aorta replacement surgery a month ago and have these odd sensations in my pec (one side is worse than the other). The surgeon's office said that this happens from time to time as the nerves there were nerves that were cut as the sternum was cut open. I was hoping that once the drains and wires were removed and the bandage covering came off the feeling would return to normal--no such luck. Anyone have similar "odd" sensations after surgery? Any help or advice to provide is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
 

LoveMyBraveHeart

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My fiance had similar sensations. There is still some numbness from time to time and he had his aortic valve re-replaced in August. He would complain for zingers burning for about 8 or so weeks after surgery. He was able to get relief from lidocaine patches (no menthol!) and plain lidocaine cream. I remember after all of his OHS, he would complain of his "titty" hurting :LOL: usually the left side, but occasionally the right as well. They put you in some very unnatural positions in order to access what they need to within your heart, so it's not surprising. He also got gabapentin for his nerve pain after surgery which seemed to help a great bit. Though, the nerve pain was in his leg from an unsuccessful attempt to repair the valve he had placed in December of 2018.

While having the drain tubes and wires removed help dull the acute pressure and pain while in the hospital, nerve pain/healing is a different battle. It takes your body awhile to re-situate tissue back to where it was, or where it will be from here on out.

Speaking from experience with my own surgery, burning, tingling, and zinging, happened at my insicions and also in the tissue surrounding them. Nerves are a funny thing! After about 4 months of healing, the scar tissue was very near fully developed and now I am numb at my incisions.

It sounds like your recovery is going pretty well, congrats on being a month out. Soon it will be all part of your distant memory and you can get on with your life as usual!
 
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gerrychuck

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Keep in mind that nerve regrows at about the same speed as hair, so it can take a while for numbness, etc to resolve after the superficial nerves are cut. The nerve tissue beyond the cut dies, leaving the pathway intact, so it starts regrowing from the cut end, has the find the pathway, and then re-innervates along the pathway as it regrows. Usually the freshly innervated areas are hypersensitive at first, then return to normal, so each area progresses from numb to hypersensitive to normal over the course of the process. Very normal part of post-surgical recovery no matter what part of the body is operated on🙂
 
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tom in MO

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Does anyone have experience or the problem of chest tightness and numbness and hypersensitivity all at the same time? I had open heart valve and aorta replacement surgery a month ago and have these odd sensations in my pec (one side is worse than the other). The surgeon's office said that this happens from time to time as the nerves there were nerves that were cut as the sternum was cut open. I was hoping that once the drains and wires were removed and the bandage covering came off the feeling would return to normal--no such luck. Anyone have similar "odd" sensations after surgery? Any help or advice to provide is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
I had similar weird feelings and was told it was "nerves" by the cardiac rehab nurse. They went away slowly. Small sum to pay for continued life. My sternum wires are still in. Some people have had difficulty with the sternum wires and have had them removed.
 

Warrick

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I had a lot of discomfort and pectoral pain with my wires, Ive read somewhere that the electricity in your body may react with the wire being conductive, I had mine out after 12 months and the majority of the pain went away so well worth it!
 

Warrick

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Dec 27, 2015
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Came across this tonight and thought this was interesting but not for the sqeemish..
Sternal wire removal-

Although I know my wire removal was certainly not a full length procedure like this one, just two small incisions top and bottom, guess depends on the surgeon but its nothing to fear, and mine were removed with an INR of 2.1 I might add.
 
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