- Jun 24, 2019
My husband had an AVR on the 9th July. He was discharged and we came home a week later. He was pleased to be home but gradually became more breathless and unable to complete the planned light exercise routine. He had no appetite and to put it in his words at the time “felt like ****!” Last Friday I decided there must be something more than just post op tiredness going on. I rang the cardiac rehab nurse at our local hospital, told her what was happening and she told me to bring him straight to the hospital. When we got there they did an echo and everything got crazy. He had pericardial effusion fast approaching tamponade. Translated this is fluid build up around the heart with the pressure slowing and eventually stopping the heart from beating. They inserted a drain and got him into the emergency helicopter back to the city where he had the AVR done. They told me he wouldn’t be alive now if I hadn’t called the nurse and gone in. He came home today and is a lot better than he was since before the op. The message here is NEVER ignore anything that doesn’t seem right post op. They don’t mind if it’s a false alarm, rather that than have a tragedy. If you've been breathless before the op you may just accept it as the norm. Don’t! Go get it checked out.