It makes a clicking sound

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Lynn

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Mar 24, 2021
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It’s been 9 months and I seldom hear my On-x anymore. If it’s quiet and I listen I can hear it but I personally don’t mind the sound. I compare it to the creepy wosh wosh of my bicuspid valve prior to surgery and it sounds great!
 

almost_hectic

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Jun 30, 2015
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naples, florida
As I was laying in bed last night staring at the ceiling unable to sleep, I listened to my click, click, click, click, click, clic, click... and so on for what seemed like forever. I thought to myself, I wonder if I will ever know complete silence ever again?.. I tend to think not. Its been 6 years + since my surgery. While its gotten a lot quieter than when it was first implanted. I can still hear it when my surroundings are quiet. So it wouldn't seem like the sound will diminish anymore than it has after six years. Unless, maybe I get a different body altogether by becoming incredibly obese or something...
 

MdaPA

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Jul 8, 2020
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As I was laying in bed last night staring at the ceiling unable to sleep, I listened to my click, click, click, click, click, clic, click... and so on for what seemed like forever. I thought to myself, I wonder if I will ever know complete silence ever again?.. I tend to think not. Its been 6 years + since my surgery. While its gotten a lot quieter than when it was first implanted. I can still hear it when my surroundings are quiet. So it wouldn't seem like the sound will diminish anymore than it has after six years. Unless, maybe I get a different body altogether by becoming incredibly obese or something...
My wife still hears the double clicks of her St Jude mitral and aortic valves after 4 years. It drives her crazy mostly when she is resting or trying to sleep so she listens to the radio (mostly sports talk) through headphones to drown-out the sound.
 

almost_hectic

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My wife still hears the double clicks of her St Jude mitral and aortic valves after 4 years. It drives her crazy mostly when she is resting or trying to sleep so she listens to the radio (mostly sports talk) through headphones to drown-out the sound.
yup, I do something similar to that sometimes
 

Brinntache

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Mar 25, 2021
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Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
I have a CPAP machine, so the rise and fall of the air muffles the sound. My wife is just happy the machine stopped my snoring, got used to the CPAP pretty quick, and can't hear my valve when it's on. A little fluctuating white noise to fill the silence goes a long way. I think the fact that the CPAP is on all night every night helped our brains acclimatize and ignore the sounds.
I also find that drinking water helps when it's extra loud. Don't know why.
 

Mister_James

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Aug 23, 2013
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Yeah saying mechanicals valves get quiet is a stretch. You learn not to hear it when your mind is busy with other things but when it is quiet and it's you and your valve...you hear it.

It's worse when you are under stress and have irregular beats...
 

Chuck C

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Dec 5, 2020
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Yeah saying mechanicals valves get quiet is a stretch. You learn not to hear it when your mind is busy with other things but when it is quiet and it's you and your valve...you hear it.

It's worse when you are under stress and have irregular beats...
I really think this must be a YMMV type of thing. I'm all alone right now, it is totally quiet, and as hard as I try I can't hear my mechanical valve. Now, the moment I take a deep breath, "thump thump thump" there it is, but not at all a clicking sound. My resting HR and blood pressure are pretty low, so I don't know if that is the reason, or if it's something else, but unless I breath deeply or put on earphones, I almost never hear mine.

Also, unless they put their head on my chest, no one in the room has been able to hear my valve, and I've tested this many times. As to why some are louder than others, I guess it will remain somewhat of a mystery for now.
 

AZATADINE

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Aug 30, 2021
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All I can say is that I have a tissue valve and I can hear the thump thump thump of my heart at night if I lie on my side with my head on the pillow. That keeps me awake. I'd have jumped out the window by now if I was clicking as well.
 

MdaPA

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slipkid

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Yeah saying mechanicals valves get quiet is a stretch. You learn not to hear it when your mind is busy with other things but when it is quiet and it's you and your valve...you hear it.
Not true for mine. It makes no noise at all. No clicking, no nothing.

Unless you listen with a stethoscope (and know what to listen for), OR if I am lying chest down on a bed so the mattress is an echo chamber with my ear pressed to the mattress then I can hear it thumping (but even without a replacement valve then my heart beating as is used to make thumps).

P.S. (Edit) I wonder what factors influence the noise vs no noise that people observe? Valve size? Body weight? Something about tissues in the body absorbing the sound? Some valves just made in a way that they click and others not? Maybe I got an "audiophile" model valve with Dolby C or a noisegate that keeps it quiet!
 
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JedC

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Jul 21, 2021
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On the positive side, once I fall asleep, I've never slept better "since I was a baby". As I type this, around 10am in the morning, I can hear a "chirping" sound in my ears and feel/hear the thump in my chest / throat. My procedure was on September 29th of 2021. I do plan to get used to it, however, I do think candidates for artificial valves should be aware to help them prepare.
 

pellicle

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P.S. (Edit) I wonder what factors influence the noise vs no noise that people observe? Valve size? Body weight? Something about tissues in the body absorbing the sound?
myself I'm of the view its down to scar tissue and if you do or don't have a bental. If you are on a 2nd redo (as I was) there will be a lot more scar tissue from the previous two surgeries. Some people get a higher scar tissue reaction than others, which may contribute too.
 

pellicle

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...and I can hear the thump thump thump of my heart at night if I lie on my side with my head on the pillow.
interestingly I have a mechanical, but I can't hear any ticking; but I do "feel" acoustically the thump thump. I know its conducted through my body to my eardrum as earplugs don't alter it (actually they sort of enhance it).
 

Brinntache

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Mar 25, 2021
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Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
All I can say is that I have a tissue valve and I can hear the thump thump thump of my heart at night if I lie on my side with my head on the pillow. That keeps me awake. I'd have jumped out the window by now if I was clicking as well.
Dang, I thought the benefit of tissue was that you couldn't hear it. Maybe try different background noises? There are a million types. It's easy to hear the heart in absolute silence.
 

JedC

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Jul 21, 2021
Messages
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In terms of thumping, I guess what I really "hear" is a more efficient / effective valve instead my previous sloppy, sloshy, bi-cuspid valve. In terms of "clicking" - I guess that's what a composite material sounds like from the inside out.
 

Chuck C

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Dec 5, 2020
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Yesterday I had a follow up echo for my mechanical aortic valve- I had surgery in March of this year to replace my aortic valve, which ended up being a Bentall, with my aortic root and part of my ascending aorta replaced as well.

I also had a consult with my cardiologist after he had a chance to review my echo. Although the hemodynamic numbers have not yet been calculated, after his review he indicated that the valve is doing well and nothing to be concerned about at this time.

He did ask me if the sound bothered me, and I thought I would share that conversation for the benefit of those reading this thread. As I've shared here, I informed him that it does not bother me at all. I just hear it when I breathe deeply, when I exercise hard and when I lay down. I asked him how common it was for patients to be bothered by the clicking sound. He said out of hundreds of mechanical valve patients that he has seen; he has only had a couple who were very bothered by the sound. While it varies person to person, as we are seeing from the feedback here, it seems that this is something that only a small % of patients are deeply troubled by.

As a side note, after reading some of the stories here about how some members have trouble with their physicians, I am grateful that I have a cardiologist who treats me like an adult, who enjoys discussing the medical literature with me, answers all of my questions and always assists me with any changes to my prescriptions that I request. I also appreciate that he stays on top of the published literature and is extremely knowledgeable about his field.
 

AZATADINE

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Aug 30, 2021
Messages
92
Dang, I thought the benefit of tissue was that you couldn't hear it. Maybe try different background noises? There are a million types. It's easy to hear the heart in absolute silence.
I can't hear the valve at all. Silent. I can feel the strong heartbeat of my heart and I can hear the heartbeat with my head on the pillow. However, half of the reason that I notice the heartbeats so much is that I can't fecking sleep 🥴....I only really started to notice it when I started having trouble sleeping. I'm assuming that'll come right when I go back to work and back to a routine. I was always tired for the last year before my op but I'm never tired now!! I must have nearly been fecked 😆.
 

Daniel758

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Apr 24, 2018
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49
Location
California
I can't hear the valve at all. Silent. I can feel the strong heartbeat of my heart and I can hear the heartbeat with my head on the pillow. However, half of the reason that I notice the heartbeats so much is that I can't fecking sleep 🥴....I only really started to notice it when I started having trouble sleeping. I'm assuming that'll come right when I go back to work and back to a routine. I was always tired for the last year before my op but I'm never tired now!! I must have nearly been fecked 😆.
Hello Azatadine,

I've had a tissue valve going on 4 years in April and I also experienced the "thumping" immediately after the surgery, especially when I sat the wrong way in a chair or laid on my back or left side in bed.

It was enough to keep me up at night (insomnia is the worst), too, but it eventually died out at around 4-6 months and the insomnia with it. I now only hear it on the very rare occasion I sit or lay in a twisted or awkward position.

So hang in there, there's hope on the horizon!

As for the extra energy, I experienced that too and it's been fantastic. I feel 20 years younger and I'm even rehabbing a cabin by myself to one, prove to myself I'm 100% back and still can, and two, to give to my family as a place for everyone to come together as life slowly pulls us in different directions.

Overall, it's like a second chance at life that I'm eternally grateful to have received.

My best wishes to you for a speedy recovery.
 

gail363

New member
Joined
Feb 18, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Essex
I was told by the consultant that it would be louder in the first months because everything had been pushed out of the way for the surgery and my heart was in an 'echo chamber' lol. He said that later it would fill up with tissue and would not be so loud. At first it felt like my heart was in my throat but i hardly notice it nowdays except when I rush around and my pulse rate goes up then it feels like I have a drum in my throat! The only other person that can hear my 'tick' is my granddaughter! I promise it gets better x
 

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