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pellicle

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How long is long term?
years, although within some months you'll likely start to notice some more "pressure" as they insert the needle into the vein (which isn't like the beautiful simulation a kid on a CAD station may make up for a SPFX in a movie) as that starts to get scar tissue.
 

Protimenow

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This bureaucracy really IS a pain. I just went to an HMO to save money, and I've also gotten caught in the Group A / Group B mess. When I signed up, I was told that any specialist that belongs in my health care plan can be seen -- but that isn't the case.

As far as blood draws and damage to your vessels is concerned -- it's a real issue. A vein can only be tapped a limited number of times before scarring makes it unusable. The number of times may vary based on the original size of the vein, your body's reaction to the damage, and other factors. (FWIW - I've been using one finger, and the same basic area on the finger, for INR testing. It's recently either formed a callus, or just became mostly unusable if I want enough blood for a test -- and this is just a finger -- imagine what would happen with a large needle in a vein).
 

epstns

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A thought about meds:

After my valve surgery, I had AFIB pretty badly. When I left the hospital, I was sent home with a scrip for amiodarone. My cardio, along with the folks on here, advised me how bad the long-term side effects of amiodarone are/can be. My cardio told me that if he needed to keep me on meds long-term for the afib, he would switch me to Multaq. This is a medication similar to amiodarone, but without the iodine, thus without most of the nasty side effects.

Something to keep in mind. . . just in case.
 

johnmarkos

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Jul 21, 2015
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I had an appointment with my cardiologist yesterday, and I think it went well. He wants me to get my INR tested again on Thursday, because it's still moving around a lot. I can begin cardiac rehab at the end of this month and return to work at the beginning of March. We're still working on home testing, but I haven't gotten the call from the service yet.

Unfortunately, I have another mild to moderate pleural effusion. My cardiologist has decided that rather than drain it right away, I'm going on Furosemide for a couple weeks, then another chest X-Ray. If pleural effusion is still present, it will be drained.

I'm going to taper off the Amiodarone: yesterday, as directed by my cardiologist, I decreased my dosage from 800mg/day to 400, and next week I'm going down to 200mg/day.
 

johnmarkos

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One more piece of good news: apparently I don't have to abstain from coffee after all! I misunderstood after my second episode of AFlutter -- I thought I was to go cold turkey for a while. Turns out I'm allowed up to one cup a day. I celebrated with a demitasse of drip coffee this morning -- like, about an ounce. So I'll probably start home roasting again this weekend, so I can have the really good stuff.

I was wearing my beer socks yesterday (portraying a mug full of ale), and my cardiologist noted them when he checked my ankles -- I said, "Yes, it's what I can't have." He replied, "Maybe this summer."

He also allowed me to go off a low sodium diet after I pointed out that I'd lost 14 pounds (~6kg/1 stone) since surgery, and I'd like to gain some of that back. Turns out it's pretty hard for me to gain weight when I basically have to prepare everything myself, keeping track of sodium and vitamin K.
 

pellicle

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One more piece of good news: apparently I don't have to abstain from coffee
3 cheers ... better than Lasix too!

keeping track of sodium and vitamin K.
my advice is don't bother keeping track of vitamin K ... just eat what you want. Really

Also, try having a glass of stout an evening too ... high in Iron (or is your Iron level good?)
 

johnmarkos

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Also, try having a glass of stout an evening too ... high in Iron (or is your Iron level good?)
It's getting better, but I'm not cleared for alcohol for a while. Maybe this summer, as my cardiologist said. Impossible burgers are pretty high in iron: heme iron, like meat, even. So I've been eating those when I can.
 

tom in MO

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Jan 17, 2012
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It's getting better, but I'm not cleared for alcohol for a while. Maybe this summer, as my cardiologist said. Impossible burgers are pretty high in iron: heme iron, like meat, even. So I've been eating those when I can.
Dried legumes, i.e. beans, are high in iron if you want to avoid red meat.
 

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