Mechanical Valve

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Chuck C

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I delt with so much incompetence in the hospital it was a bit crazy!
I found it very interesting how it can really vary nurse to nurse, in terms of their understanding.

On my second to last day in the hospital, before the end of her night shift, my nurse asked me if there was anything that she could get for me before she left. I was feeling sort of cave man by then and so I asked for a razor and shaving cream so that I could shave- she was happy to get them for me.

15 minutes later the day shift nurse arrives, confiscates the razor and scolds me. She then went on to lecture me that I must never shave with a razor from now on, as I am on warfarin, and doing so could cause a life threatening bleed. And, of course, this is nonsense.
 

Redone

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Capillary leak syndrome explains the excessive extracellular fluid perioperatively. Around 20 litres is average. Always question when things don't seem right!
Sorry I'm not sure what this means as if there were issues with my capillaries I doubt they would have released me home yesterday. I received 7 liters of fluid.
 

Redone

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Boston, Massachusetts
I found it very interesting how it can really vary nurse to nurse, in terms of their understanding.

On my second to last day in the hospital, before the end of her night shift, my nurse asked me if there was anything that she could get for me before she left. I was feeling sort of cave man by then and so I asked for a razor and shaving cream so that I could shave- she was happy to get them for me.

15 minutes later the day shift nurse arrives, confiscates the razor and scolds me. She then went on to lecture me that I must never shave with a razor from now on, as I am on warfarin, and doing so could cause a life threatening bleed. And, of course, this is nonsense.
How frustrating! My situation was similar in terms of information varying from nurse to nurse. They are much more uninformed than I realize and I definitely saw a good amount of incompetence from a world renowned hospital. It's so nice being out of that invironment from a healing prospective. I was blown away at how little they allow you to actually sleep!!
 

Redone

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Messages
76
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Boston, Massachusetts
I found it very interesting how it can really vary nurse to nurse, in terms of their understanding.

On my second to last day in the hospital, before the end of her night shift, my nurse asked me if there was anything that she could get for me before she left. I was feeling sort of cave man by then and so I asked for a razor and shaving cream so that I could shave- she was happy to get them for me.

15 minutes later the day shift nurse arrives, confiscates the razor and scolds me. She then went on to lecture me that I must never shave with a razor from now on, as I am on warfarin, and doing so could cause a life threatening bleed. And, of course, this is nonsense.
So ridiculous she didn't know a razor was ok with a mechanical valve. That's the kind of stuff that gets to me. How can you be treating patients and be clueless? Once I got my bearings I got on top of things. It was the PCA's taking vitals that were either really good or bad. This one PCA woke me to do vitals and I said, how often do you take vitals? She said, every 4 hours and I said, well I just had them taken 2 hours ago. At this point I was starting to get very frustrated
 

Chuck C

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This one PCA woke me to do vitals and I said, how often do you take vitals? She said, every 4 hours and I said, well I just had them taken 2 hours ago.
I found it really hard to get sleep in the hospital, other than little naps here and there. However, I found that at UCLA they were respectful of allowing for sleep if possible. Near the end of my stay, I was able to string a couple of hours of sleep together here and there. On one occasion the PCA came an hour later than scheduled. I later learned that my nurse had noticed that I was sleeping and, since all my vitals had been so stable, asked them to come back in an hour and let me sleep. Pretty cool.

I had eye surgery a couple of years earlier at UC Riverside where they had zero respect for sleep. My room was right across the hall from a supply room and every time it was used it closed automatically with a loud bang- like seriously? They don't care enough to adjust the door so that it does not make a loud noise when it closes? On both nights of that stay, I was woken up by the guy coming to my room at 2am, turning on the lights and picking up the trash from the room, which seemed beyond ridiculous.
As bad as that was, it did not compare to the level of inconvenience caused when they lost my personal belongings, including my keys and wallet. I received a call from Riverside 3 days after my release informing me that they had found my lost items. So, a new nurse had taken them from me at the ER just before my surgery and checked them into the safe room. However, on the check in form under "Name", you are supposed to put the patients name- you know, so that they know who it belongs to. Well, she filled her name in the space instead of mine. So, of course, when they tried to retrieve my stuff they were always told: "Nope we aren't holding anything of his."
 

Christyleedh

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Oct 22, 2021
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I’ve had so many issues with nursing too, but the lack of sleep is the least of my worries.

I was taken to the hospital by ambulance with stroke symptoms (slurring speech and mouth drooping) three months after my mechanical valve surgery. The EMT spent about 15 minutes trying to get an IV in before we even moved from the parking lot, then had no sirens. I found out later the ER did not initiate stroke protocol right away because the EMT told them my symptoms had resolved. (They hadn’t). The EMT diagnosed me himself and told me I was probably just having Bell’s palsy. (Which I wasn’t).

I guarantee if I had been 70 years old rather than 37, I would have been brought to the ER with sirens and lights.

That same visit, I was dosed on heparin based on my last weight taken at the hospital 7 years earlier when I was nine months pregnant. No one weighed me or bothered to ask my current weight which was 20% less.

A nurse refused to give me aspirin, which I take with warfarin, because she told me I might have surgery later- which there were no plans for. The doctor came in the next day and asked me why I wasn’t taking it, and I told him because the nurse refused. I had to wait more than 24 hours for MRI and echo, and they brought me salad with carrots, and broccoli for dinner despite the fact that I told them I am allergic to carrots, and had a low INR and needed it to go up.

It was full of errors and I’m thankful I survived.

I’ve had several strokes (luckily minor) since then and I don’t bother getting an ambulance anymore. Last time I had one, I had a coworker drive me and I was getting a CT scan within 20 minutes of onset.
(With that being said, call 911 if you have stroke symptoms-they might treat you better!).
 

drleng

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Oct 22, 2021
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Sorry I'm not sure what this means as if there were issues with my capillaries I doubt they would have released me home yesterday. I received 7 liters of fluid.
It's a phenomenon that happens to alot of patients during open heart surgery resulting in fluid retention. I gained around 7 lb (3kg) of fluid but my kidneys flushed it out by 10 days post op. A lot of valvers here also experienced a similar thing. But I must say, your volume is rather excessive and that's why you should ask why and what else could be going on - eg were you given too much IV fluids? Are there anything wrong with your heart or kidneys?
 

drleng

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Oct 22, 2021
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Sorry I'm not sure what this means as if there were issues with my capillaries I doubt they would have released me home yesterday. I received 7 liters of fluid.
Btw, I don't think they would have sent you home if there was anything wrong with your heart or kidneys so you can relax ;) But always good to question your health care providers to keep them on their toes. I think you will be able to offload all that excess fluid in a week or so.
Good to know if it's just "capillary leak syndrome" or something else..
 

Redone

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Boston, Massachusetts
It's a phenomenon that happens to alot of patients during open heart surgery resulting in fluid retention. I gained around 7 lb (3kg) of fluid but my kidneys flushed it out by 10 days post op. A lot of valvers here also experienced a similar thing. But I must say, your volume is rather excessive and that's why you should ask why and what else could be going on - eg were you given too much IV fluids? Are there anything wrong with your heart or kidneys?
I learned more today. Apparently, most cardiac patients are given Metropolol after cardiac surgery (forgive me if I'm wrong, but this is what I've been told) and my blood pressure has always been 112/60 or so. Well they gave it to Mr and my blood pressure plummeted to 95/52 so instead of giving Lasiks like most patients the surgical team had to spend several days getting my blood pressure back up and couldn't administer this drug. Between that, the fluids of 7 liters and my fit body being put through the wringer this is the response from my body, excessive fluid retention. It's possible 7 liters was too much. I'm not sure what the norm is, but my body is very sensitive to all drugs because I don't take any.
 

Redone

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Btw, I don't think they would have sent you home if there was anything wrong with your heart or kidneys so you can relax ;) But always good to question your health care providers to keep them on their toes. I think you will be able to offload all that excess fluid in a week or so.
Good to know if it's just "capillary leak syndrome" or something else..
I agree! Nothing has ever been wrong with my kidneys thank God 😊 I think between so many fluids and putting me on Metropolol (I'm a bit disgusted about this) as you would think the surgeon would have known my blood pressure already ran on the lower side and not being given Lasiks in the hospital, rather getting it the day I was leaving did it. When you're in the hospital do they administer Lasiks via pill, IV or is it only in pill form?
 

Redone

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Messages
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Location
Boston, Massachusetts
I’ve had so many issues with nursing too, but the lack of sleep is the least of my worries.

I was taken to the hospital by ambulance with stroke symptoms (slurring speech and mouth drooping) three months after my mechanical valve surgery. The EMT spent about 15 minutes trying to get an IV in before we even moved from the parking lot, then had no sirens. I found out later the ER did not initiate stroke protocol right away because the EMT told them my symptoms had resolved. (They hadn’t). The EMT diagnosed me himself and told me I was probably just having Bell’s palsy. (Which I wasn’t).

I guarantee if I had been 70 years old rather than 37, I would have been brought to the ER with sirens and lights.

That same visit, I was dosed on heparin based on my last weight taken at the hospital 7 years earlier when I was nine months pregnant. No one weighed me or bothered to ask my current weight which was 20% less.

A nurse refused to give me aspirin, which I take with warfarin, because she told me I might have surgery later- which there were no plans for. The doctor came in the next day and asked me why I wasn’t taking it, and I told him because the nurse refused. I had to wait more than 24 hours for MRI and echo, and they brought me salad with carrots, and broccoli for dinner despite the fact that I told them I am allergic to carrots, and had a low INR and needed it to go up.

It was full of errors and I’m thankful I survived.

I’ve had several strokes (luckily minor) since then and I don’t bother getting an ambulance anymore. Last time I had one, I had a coworker drive me and I was getting a CT scan within 20 minutes of onset.
(With that being said, call 911 if you have stroke symptoms-they might treat you better!).
Wow! What incompetence! I wish I could tell you your story is surprising, but after what I saw last week at one of the best hospitals in Boston it's become very clear if you're not your own advocate ( I realize in your state this was likely impossible) you could wind up in big trouble. I'm sorry you went through such a trauma and hope life treats you well. Hospitals push so many drugs on patients. I learned this first hand last week. Between the drugs and killing you softly by taking your vitals more often than letting you sleep...get fixed and get out.
 

Redone

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Messages
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Location
Boston, Massachusetts
I found it really hard to get sleep in the hospital, other than little naps here and there. However, I found that at UCLA they were respectful of allowing for sleep if possible. Near the end of my stay, I was able to string a couple of hours of sleep together here and there. On one occasion the PCA came an hour later than scheduled. I later learned that my nurse had noticed that I was sleeping and, since all my vitals had been so stable, asked them to come back in an hour and let me sleep. Pretty cool.

I had eye surgery a couple of years earlier at UC Riverside where they had zero respect for sleep. My room was right across the hall from a supply room and every time it was used it closed automatically with a loud bang- like seriously? They don't care enough to adjust the door so that it does not make a loud noise when it closes? On both nights of that stay, I was woken up by the guy coming to my room at 2am, turning on the lights and picking up the trash from the room, which seemed beyond ridiculous.
As bad as that was, it did not compare to the level of inconvenience caused when they lost my personal belongings, including my keys and wallet. I received a call from Riverside 3 days after my release informing me that they had found my lost items. So, a new nurse had taken them from me at the ER just before my surgery and checked them into the safe room. However, on the check in form under "Name", you are supposed to put the patients name- you know, so that they know who it belongs to. Well, she filled her name in the space instead of mine. So, of course, when they tried to retrieve my stuff they were always told: "Nope we aren't holding anything of his."
Wow! You've had both experiences! I can't believe the nurse would label your items with her name. Well on the other hand I guess I can. I had every type of nurse last week. A few competent, but many brand new and out of college. Hopefully, none of us have to go to the hospital anytime soon, but if we do I hope it all goes well! 🙏🏻
 

slipkid

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Yeah, the fluids mentioned here, with me it was really crazy. I don't know how much weight-wise gain my fluid was but I was so overloaded that I had NO toes, they were just faint lines on my feet which were just inflated blobs. My legs/feet were Michelen man squared. Other parts of my body too. It was frightening. I remember that I had some kind of squeezing motorized socks that I had to wear while lying down, to try to move the fluid out I guess. Swelling had gone down by when I had been discharged but just riding home in a car made one of my legs swell back up to Michelen proportions on the way home. Not fun but eventually my body got rid of all that crap (when left me about 20 pounds underweight oddly enough).

As far as Metoprolol goes I know I was on that after surgery but at some point was switched to Atenolol. Do not remember what the reasons were. Finally got off that as well (I do not have high blood BP in the first place). I was very ill just recovering from the surgery and could do nothing other than sleep/lie in bed along with forcing light exercise (walking) but I realize now that Metoprolol was to blame for some of that lack of energy.

I say that because about 5 years later I had a heart blockage which the Dr alleviated with a stent. Afterwards I was kept overnight in the hospital for observation/bleed precautions. I felt GREAT after the stent and was up & about walking the halls etc. Got up early the next morning at 6am waiting to be released. Then nurse came in and gave me Metoprolol, said I would be taking this as a precaution for several months. Within like 5-10 minutes after taking that pill I felt like I was transported to a planet with a gravitational field 100x this one. Was unbelievably weak & tired. Could not stay awake. Crawled back into bed and fell asleep. A friend who was going to give me a ride home came into my room about 2 hours later and I slept through that, did not even know he was there.

My "plan" such as it was prior to getting the stent on a Monday was to rest/recover for 2 days then go back to work that Thursday. However I found I could not function, could do nothing other than lie in bed, sleeping and just zoning out watching TV. Saw my PCP actually on Tuesday, drove myself, yet got lost on the way, did not know where I was, where I was going etc. Getting there I fell asleep in the waiting then in the exam room too. Told PCP I could not go back to work Thurs after all, was so tired could barely function (I ended up staying in the exam room & sleeping for like 30 minutes b4 I could even leave). PCP agreed I should rest up that week then reconvene following Monday.

Following Monday I was still no better energy wise. PCP lectured me that Bernie Sanders just had a stent and was back on the campaign trail. That I should not be this tired etc. Told me to get out and walk and walk. So I tried that and ended up only getting like 2 blocks and had to sit down on the curb and zone out/rest, then stumble back home like I was in a dream. I called to complain later that I could still not function, something was wrong. PCP had cardiologist call me who told me to take the Metoprolol at night instead of in the morning. Tried that, still no diff. I could NOT function behind lying in bed and sleeping all the time (note also that I had the most bizarre, realistic and scary nightmares during this time of my entire life).

After 2 weeks of this finally the Cardiologist told me to reduce the Metoprolol to 1/2 pill instead of 1 pill. The results were immediate. Next day I recovered my energy up to like 90%. Started researching Metoprolol which revealed that many people have similar issues with it, especially the bad dreams. Unfortunately in my experience Drs do not want to hear about any adverse drug effects and just treat anyone who brings up issues like this as a "problem patient".
 

Chuck C

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finally the Cardiologist told me to reduce the Metoprolol to 1/2 pill instead of 1 pill. The results were immediate.
Similar experience here. My energy level was not low, as you describe, as I could walk severak miles. But often when I did a flight of stairs I would nearly faint. When they approved my request to cut my dose in half, it changed immediately and could go up and down stairs with no issues.
 

Christyleedh

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Oct 22, 2021
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Wow! What incompetence! I wish I could tell you your story is surprising, but after what I saw last week at one of the best hospitals in Boston it's become very clear if you're not your own advocate ( I realize in your state this was likely impossible) you could wind up in big trouble. I'm sorry you went through such a trauma and hope life treats you well. Hospitals push so many drugs on patients. I learned this first hand last week. Between the drugs and killing you softly by taking your vitals more often than letting you sleep...get fixed and get out.
You definitely have to be your own advocate for sure. I’m glad you made it through!
 

Unicusp

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Jan 30, 2021
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262
I agree! Nothing has ever been wrong with my kidneys thank God 😊 I think between so many fluids and putting me on Metropolol (I'm a bit disgusted about this) as you would think the surgeon would have known my blood pressure already ran on the lower side and not being given Lasiks in the hospital, rather getting it the day I was leaving did it. When you're in the hospital do they administer Lasiks via pill, IV or is it only in pill form?
Lasix (brand name) is usually given as Furosemide ( generic) in tablet form from 20mg to 80mg tablets. What dose are you on? This is a very old diuretic, tried and true. Might want to increase dosage to speed the loss of fluid retention. I went into surgery at 165lbs. and gained around 18lbs of fluid. It was very uncomfortable. I recall it took 2 to 3 weeks to get the weight off and stayed on Furosemide for maybe one month. Keep drinking plenty of water too, to help flush kidneys.
I understand that the fluid retention is more of swollen tissue from the body's response to surgery trauma, then from the IV's. Every body responds differently and takes different time frames to recover. I had never been over 167lbs. in my lifetime so it was a shock for me as well. Hang in there. Your old fit body will return. Muscle has memory and will come back. Patience! Since you were in great shape prior to surgery, you should recover back to normal quickly after that excess fluid is gone. Hang in there!
 

Redone

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Yeah, the fluids mentioned here, with me it was really crazy. I don't know how much weight-wise gain my fluid was but I was so overloaded that I had NO toes, they were just faint lines on my feet which were just inflated blobs. My legs/feet were Michelen man squared. Other parts of my body too. It was frightening. I remember that I had some kind of squeezing motorized socks that I had to wear while lying down, to try to move the fluid out I guess. Swelling had gone down by when I had been discharged but just riding home in a car made one of my legs swell back up to Michelen proportions on the way home. Not fun but eventually my body got rid of all that crap (when left me about 20 pounds underweight oddly enough).

As far as Metoprolol goes I know I was on that after surgery but at some point was switched to Atenolol. Do not remember what the reasons were. Finally got off that as well (I do not have high blood BP in the first place). I was very ill just recovering from the surgery and could do nothing other than sleep/lie in bed along with forcing light exercise (walking) but I realize now that Metoprolol was to blame for some of that lack of energy.

I say that because about 5 years later I had a heart blockage which the Dr alleviated with a stent. Afterwards I was kept overnight in the hospital for observation/bleed precautions. I felt GREAT after the stent and was up & about walking the halls etc. Got up early the next morning at 6am waiting to be released. Then nurse came in and gave me Metoprolol, said I would be taking this as a precaution for several months. Within like 5-10 minutes after taking that pill I felt like I was transported to a planet with a gravitational field 100x this one. Was unbelievably weak & tired. Could not stay awake. Crawled back into bed and fell asleep. A friend who was going to give me a ride home came into my room about 2 hours later and I slept through that, did not even know he was there.

My "plan" such as it was prior to getting the stent on a Monday was to rest/recover for 2 days then go back to work that Thursday. However I found I could not function, could do nothing other than lie in bed, sleeping and just zoning out watching TV. Saw my PCP actually on Tuesday, drove myself, yet got lost on the way, did not know where I was, where I was going etc. Getting there I fell asleep in the waiting then in the exam room too. Told PCP I could not go back to work Thurs after all, was so tired could barely function (I ended up staying in the exam room & sleeping for like 30 minutes b4 I could even leave). PCP agreed I should rest up that week then reconvene following Monday.

Following Monday I was still no better energy wise. PCP lectured me that Bernie Sanders just had a stent and was back on the campaign trail. That I should not be this tired etc. Told me to get out and walk and walk. So I tried that and ended up only getting like 2 blocks and had to sit down on the curb and zone out/rest, then stumble back home like I was in a dream. I called to complain later that I could still not function, something was wrong. PCP had cardiologist call me who told me to take the Metoprolol at night instead of in the morning. Tried that, still no diff. I could NOT function behind lying in bed and sleeping all the time (note also that I had the most bizarre, realistic and scary nightmares during this time of my entire life).

After 2 weeks of this finally the Cardiologist told me to reduce the Metoprolol to 1/2 pill instead of 1 pill. The results were immediate. Next day I recovered my energy up to like 90%. Started researching Metoprolol which revealed that many people have similar issues with it, especially the bad dreams. Unfortunately in my experience Drs do not want to hear about any adverse drug effects and just treat anyone who brings up issues like this as a "problem patient".
Unbelievable!!!! Your story resonates with me. I think Metroprolol is possibly wonderful for those having high blood pressure, but am disappointed to know hospitals simply prescribe it to extremely healthy, fit patients like myself instead of looking at the patients chart and realizing they never had high blood pressure in the first place! It doesn't have to be given as a precautionary measure when blood pressure is already 112/60! You would think Drs years of experience would tell them this. Drs and hospitals are all about prescription drugs and in my opinion unless you absolutely need them and your life depends on it then you shouldn't be taking it. Thank you for sharing your experience!
 
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