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Benner12

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Joined
Apr 5, 2023
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1
Location
Cornwall, England
Hi,

i am a 39 yr old male and I recently had a mechanical valve replacement, 3.5months now post surgery. i had 2 valve replacements in 2010, (first one got an infection and had to be done again 2 months later) also fitted with a pacemaker because of damage infection did on the first op.

i am on warfarin now and seem to be getting on ok with it. i want to go back to playing football soon (only 5-a-side) in goal. just a bit scared to go back to early.
i want to work out in my garage like i did before surgery but scared of hurting myself lifting weights. i know bone is healed and stuff but it's always on my mind. i haven't really been able to talk to anyone about my worries really as i dont want to bother people with my problems, but i thought joining a forum might help.

sorry for blabbering on!
 

tom in MO

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Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
2,089
Location
MO USA
Welcome..

You are not blabbering. We all have had the same concerns.

Your surgeon should tell you when you can resume full activity after surgery since it depends upon how they opened and closed you up. For me with a full sternum cracked, I was told to hold off on lots of activity until 3-mon. Others working in construction have said they were told longer. It seems you've had 3 surgeries, so my experience may not apply.

When it comes to excising, at about 3-month, I was told I could exercise as I see fit, but I was told by the cardiac rehab nurse to not hold my breath but to breathe as I exercise. This is to assure your new valve doesn't get any pressure surges. I don't lift weights, so I didn't ask about this subject.

This forum has a lot of helpful people. Just ask. However, my father used to say, "free advice is worth what you paid for it" :)
 

dick0236

Eat the elephant one bite at a time
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louisville, KY USA
i haven't really been able to talk to anyone about my worries really as i dont want to bother people with my problems, but i thought joining a forum might help.
Hi Benner12 and welcome. You've come to the right forum. We all have "been there, done that" and there is a lot of expertise on this form. Let your body tell you when you can safely do the things you used to do. I think you will find, in due time, that you can return to most of your pre-surgery activities.
 

pellicle

Professional Dingbat, Guru and Merkintologist
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Nov 4, 2012
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Queensland, OzTrayLeeYa
Morning

i am a 39 yr old male and I recently had a mechanical valve replacement, 3.5months now post surgery. i had 2 valve replacements in 2010, (first one got an infection and had to be done again 2 months later) also fitted with a pacemaker because of damage infection did on the first op.

sorry to hear about your (I'm guessing endo) back in 2010, so basically you were about 29 then and got a tissue prosthetic to stave off warfarin and are now on warfarin ... did I get that right?

i am on warfarin now and seem to be getting on ok with it.

that's good to hear, if you have any issues or just want to keep your INR under tighter control feel free to reach out.

i want to go back to playing football soon (only 5-a-side) in goal. just a bit scared to go back to early.

personally if your cardio / surgeon has said that your sternum as no problems then I'd say you should start training as you wish and just steady back from the harder contact.

We've had a few members over the years do that and so far haven't reported any problem

This thread makes some good points, such as "if you ask you'll always be told no"

I've been a keen motorcyclist my whole life and just recently bought a KTM to "add to my collection"


i want to work out in my garage like i did before surgery but scared of hurting myself lifting weights.

"scared" is what they want you to be because basically they deal every day with idiots who can't think, If you go at it like a 25 year old and pretend you are Julius Maddox you will perhaps just simply hurt yourself.

However if you take your brain along with you, act cautiously, follow good technique and focus on style not Kg's then you'll probably be fine.

We have a few members here who probably train (and that also includes weight train) more than you.


...but i thought joining a forum might help.

to me its an excelent idea to have done this, meet and rub shoulders with those who've gone before you and done juijitsu, serious weight lifting, aikido, ride motorcycles, .. who can share their own experiences.

Read some of Chucks posts:

sorry for blabbering on!

not at all ... I've got a few army vet (actual active combat, not deskies) friends and I can assure you that learning to actually talk about what's actually in your head is the best way to avoid turning surgery into PTSD. I can also assure you that the "bottle it inside" types, those who don't talk are the ones who kill themselves.

Best Wishes
 
Last edited:

LondonAndy

VR.org Supporter
Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2015
Messages
622
Location
London, UK
Hi,

i am a 39 yr old male and I recently had a mechanical valve replacement, 3.5months now post surgery. i had 2 valve replacements in 2010, (first one got an infection and had to be done again 2 months later) also fitted with a pacemaker because of damage infection did on the first op.

i am on warfarin now and seem to be getting on ok with it. i want to go back to playing football soon (only 5-a-side) in goal. just a bit scared to go back to early.
i want to work out in my garage like i did before surgery but scared of hurting myself lifting weights. i know bone is healed and stuff but it's always on my mind. i haven't really been able to talk to anyone about my worries really as i dont want to bother people with my problems, but i thought joining a forum might help.

sorry for blabbering on!
Welcome from a fellow Brit! Sorry to hear about the 2010 rough ride, but as others have said, you should be able to resume most things you did before - though might be worth asking the doc about heading a football, if there's a risk of internal bleeding from a strong impact.

Have you got a CoaguChek meter at home, to test your INR regularly? I highly recommend one, so that you can check your blood is not too "thin" (@pellicle will kill me for describing the coagulation time like that!) when doing impact sports. I test my blood weekly - takes 2 minutes. You will probably have to buy the machine itself, at £300, but your doctor should prescribe the test strips. This report by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence explains more if needed.
 

tommyboy14

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Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2014
Messages
112
Location
London, United Kingdom
Hello,

I only had my mechanical valve going for a year now. My surgeon said you can continue most activities on warfarin so long you are sensible. His colleague (I interviewed several at same hospital) even said Rock climbing is fair game so long you take all the precautions and are sensible.

That is of course true of any sport.

Again the key to all this is being sensible.

@LondonAndy makes a great point regarding self-testing. I do this once weekly and then I report my results to the clinic every six weeks and then they give me my dose. In all honesty, I adjust the dose if my INR falls below 2.2 (a bit higher) and lower it if it rises above 2.8. This is really straightforward. I would make sure you get a good cardiologist who has a good understanding of what you like to do and can advise you properly.

I see a private cardiologist in London. He knows me so well by now we were on first name basis by the time it came to surgery. He also knew my lifestyle, sport preference etc and my personality, so he gave me a very good overview what you can or cant do. He said the only thing to really worry about when on Warfarin is trauma to the head.


Hope that helps.
 

Chuck C

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Joined
Dec 5, 2020
Messages
2,030
Welcome to the forum.

i want to work out in my garage like i did before surgery but scared of hurting myself lifting weights. i know bone is healed and stuff but it's always on my mind. i haven't really been able to talk to anyone about my worries really as i dont want to bother people with my problems, but i thought joining a forum might help.
Have you spoken to your surgeon or cardiologist to get clearance to resume physical activities?

I'm just over 2 years out from my mechanical valve surgery. For a few months after surgery, I took it easy, doing nothing more than brisk walking, then some light biking, as well as the physical exercises which I was given upon release from the hospital. My follow up appointment was at 4 months, at which point my cardiologist cleared me for all activities. I asked specifically about weight lifting. He indicated that I can lift weights, but not to hold my breath. He also said to be sensible about the weight lifting and not get carried away. Also, he said that normally he gives the green light for these activities at 3 months, so I waited an extra month longer than I needed to apparently.

You really should seek consult with your cardiologist or surgeon about these physical activities. I do expect that they will green light you to do all of the activities that you mention.
 

uncle_boko

Member
Joined
Apr 1, 2023
Messages
11
I wonder what the record is for the number of days spent in ICU after major heart surgery (mitral/tricuspid valve repair) - for me it was 6 days!
 

uncle_boko

Member
Joined
Apr 1, 2023
Messages
11
Wow, 10 days is a lot. I may have just scraped in at 76 for the mitral and tricuspid repairs at the Cleveland in London, I read that age limit for surgery is usually 75, but as I'm still 25 inside (my Gibson electric guitar stands 3 feet behind me, although I cannot lift it at the moment!) my surgeon decided on surgery.
 
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