anybody had a heart catherization done ??

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by *ASH*, Feb 10, 2010.

  1. *ASH*

    *ASH* FURBANITE

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    i got one for next tuesday , seems my stress test came back abnormal or what my cardiologist said maybe false positive but to be sure they want to go in and look. funny thing 2 weeks ago , family doc said my cholesterol was high , wanted me on crestor, i waited til i saw cardiologist retested blood and he said cholesterol was fine , so hell if i know . i did change my diet and drink metamucil in between tests . anyway he put me on precrip fish oil , 4,000 mg daily.

    im glad i waited as i did not want to add a damn statin , drinking water ,eating right . i dunno why or what happened in between the 2 tests , but ill take a cardiologist word over a GP .

    anyway. never had heart cath done what am i in for ?

    i think the weirdest thing is i never knew they had precrip fish oil . learned something new there
     
  2. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head CLM

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    Well first, they strap you down on a stainless steel table shaped like a horizontal crucifix, situated in a walk-in refrigerator with stadium seating. Everyone is masked, so you can't identify them later. They discuss their lunch plans for a bit, while you try to simultaneously keep yourself covered with the wash cloth draped over you and try not to slip off the stainless steel crucifix. You would think the straps would prevent this eventuality, but they are no more effective than that wash cloth body drape. Then they flip coins to see who gets to stick the pipe snake into your groin, next to your junk.:supergrin:
     

  3. TBO

    TBO Why so serious? CLM

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  4. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head CLM

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    Seriously though, it is not a particularly pleasant experience, but it beats the hell out of having your chest cracked open. They go in through the femoral artery, on one side of the groin or other. They do their thing and then they apply this plug thing in the artery on their way out. You will have to remain absolutely flat and motionless as possible for six or eight hours, while that arterial plug gets itself situated. Before the advent of that plug thing though, they had to apply pressure for an extended period of time and it took longer both to get ambulatory and to heal. There will be some pain at the entry site for a couple of weeks, that will get better rapidly. The worst is a deep aching sensation that fades over time, but will be happy to remind you to take it easy, if you overdo it.

    I had complications the first time I had it done, but it went smoothly the next time. Out of respect for your nerves, I will not go into detail about the complications I had, if you do not remember me posting about it years ago. This is a routine procedure and the incidence of serious complications is very low. This procedure is a miracle of modern technology, man. Be damned glad it exists. Don't sweat this too much. You won't be under anaesthetic, but they will give you something to calm you and brother, I am here to tell you it works. Don't be too proud to ask for seconds.:supergrin:

    If they give you a stent, follow the post-op instructions. If it is a medicated stent, take every single one of the Plavix pills they tell you to take. Good luck to you, man. I hope things go smoothly. Please let us know how it turns out. Eric
     
  5. Javelin

    Javelin Got Glock? Silver Member

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    Ash buddy, I wish you the best of luck.

    :wavey:
     
  6. *ASH*

    *ASH* FURBANITE

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    thanks . not looking forward to it , ive had alot of procedures over the years , and my MIL who is staying with us now , recouping from quad open heart surgery on jan 5 says she had it done twice and not to bad. shes 83 , so we shall see , i dunno bout laying still for 6 to 8 hours thou they better just knock me out . im not a calm person persay , always busy .

    atleast then ill know if i do have have a blockage . ii have upper and lower gi procedures done 4 times yearly so hopefully not to bad.


    MIL had a cow valve installed also .

    my wife has been informed if i dont make it to post it here , for friends prayers and others to jump for joy lol.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2010
  7. TexanRon

    TexanRon Come 'n Take It

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    I had one last June. Very competent Cardiologist in Houston, TX. No big deal at all. The most painful part was the shot to deaden the place where he inserted the cath. You get a good dose of valium. Kind of like two stiff martinis before dinner. No pain at all. It was cold in there, like Eric said. I must not have got the plug, because after they wheeled me back into recovery, Nurse Ratchet comes in with a big, giant C clamp. I mean big. Put one end on the incision and the other on the bottom of the bed and then cranked that sob down. Left it there for an hour. Kept drawing blood every 30 minutes to see if the thinner was wearing off. I did not have any pain at all afterwards. No heavy lifting for two weeks. I was black and blue all over my right side. Looked like I had been beat with a 2X4. Eric was wrong about the Drs talking about lunch. They talked about their kids and where they were going fishing on Saturday. All in all, no big deal. Oh, one more thing. I had two stents put in. One blockage was at 99%, the other at 85%. I am a very lucky guy. I had failed the stress test, too. I am 5' 11", weigh 175 pounds and go to the gym 5 days a week. Bad luck and bad genes. Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2010
  8. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head CLM

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    If there is a blockage, it will almost certainly be dealt with on the spot, with a balloon angioplasty or a stent placement. It is usually one-stop shopping. Anyway, as I am sure they will impress upon you, that lying still for six or eight hours thing is damned important. It really isn't a big deal. Hell, the last time I had it done, they gave me a DVD with a fluoroscopic video of the procedure. It is kinda creepy, but cool. I take it out at parties. The DVD, I mean. Eric
     
  9. brboyer

    brboyer

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    I've had two...the second went really well. In and out in a few hours no issues. Now, the first one was different. Unlike Eric, I'll post my experience, but in all seriousness - Do not read past this if you freak out easily.















    First they will hook up 2 or 3 IV's. Give you something to mellow you out.

    Go into the cath lab. The stick a big cath (IV) in your femoral artery - upper inner thing near the joint.

    I was lucky and my doc let me watch everything on the monitors and explained everything he was doing.

    They insert the cath up and into areas around the heart and inject die. If they find any that are clogged they will send up a balloon and or stent and expand the artery.

    No big deal unless they decide you need a by-pass. Then they'll run you up to the OR and cut you open. No open heart for me just two clogged arteries.

    Recovery is the worst part if they had to run any balloons/stents in. Lying flat on the bed for something like 6-8 hours. Had my leg tied down so I could not move it/roll over/get comfortable. Could not lift my upper body or head more than like 2 inches or something stupid. Very uncomfortable.

    At some point they come in to remove the cath. Apply extreme pressure to keep you from hemorrhaging to death and put on an inflatable cuff on the wound to keep the pressure on.

    At some point they come and get you up to go walk around the hallways.

    In my first case they put in two stents and then gave me a blood thinner and a vasodilator (to open the arteries). Well I started to bleed pretty badly. They must not have got it stopped before wrapping me up. You know, it's really hard to tell you are bleeding when laying flat in bed when you've already been bleeding. Well, they came in and cleaned up that mess. Got me up to peel the sheets off me and the bed. Then because of the meds, by BP dropped to 40/10 and while standing there, I passed out! That was fun! I could actually feel the blood draining from my head. Went sort-of blind then deaf when it got to that point.

    The alarms were going off and I had this weird out-of-body experience where I was watching a bunch of nurses run into the room and help me to the bed, but I was watching from above my body. Weird! I remember thinking to my self if I was going to die before they could get me to the bed.

    Well anyway, when your BP drops that low your body kind of freaks out and the organs all shut down and when that happens, well lets just say that your body uncontrollably empties itself from every opening you have! That does not feel good!

    My wife had spent all day/evening there with me but had to go home to our little girl for the night. She left before all of this started. I called her (this was around 3AM) and told her I did not feel so good and really did not like having the nurses keep coming in and cleaning me up. Asked her if she could take the kiddo over to her mom's and come up and sit with me. What I did not tell here was that I actually thought I was going to die and wanted to see her before I did!

    Well everything worked out OK in the end. Even though I ended up having this massive bruise/pocket of blood that had infiltrated under the skin, from from the thigh crease to the knee almost the entire circumference of the thigh, about 2 inches thick! It was like someone took a bath towel, soaked it and inserted under the skin of my thigh. It took like 3-4 weeks for that to go away.

    Looked a little funny in shorts, but that's all I could wear.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2010
  10. Sunset_Va

    Sunset_Va

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    I saw this thread and had to comment. The procedure is sure not like having open heart surgery, but its not the worst thing. I went through chemo/radiation and radical neck surgery, so the catherization was more a mental issue than pain to me.

    You will do fine. I had two blockages in my heart, and had to go later for another procedure the same, to try to open blockages in my arteries in my legs for leg pain. However , it could not be done, am facing surgery instead.

    I could write a book about all this, but mainly to ease your fears, you will be fine. The worse discomfort you will have is when the dye is run through you.

    Good luck and welcome to Plavix land. Let us know how it goes.
     
  11. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head CLM

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    Meh. My story could kick your story's ass and I would inflict it on you, if I weren't afraid that it might make *Ash* faint dead away.:supergrin: Seriously though, bleeding out kinda sucks and I feel for you. I'm glad things worked out for you. Eric
     
  12. Janno05

    Janno05

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    I am a nurse on a Telemetry floor and take care of post-ptca patients on a daily basis. If you have any questions feel free to PM me.
     
  13. winglock

    winglock

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    I've had three. I talked to the doctor that ordered it and expressed my concern about laying still for several hours & wondered if there were any options. He said in some cases they were able to stitch the entry site closed. I got lucky, in each case they did the stitches. I still had to be in recovery for 4 hours.
    Best of luck Ash. Hope everything works out great.

    Btw, in each case for me the stress test had showed false positives. The first stress test was at Mayo clinic.
     
  14. brboyer

    brboyer

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    Thanks, I've heard of a few that were much worse than mine, but thankfully they are quite rare.

    In all seriousness, I've only thought I was going to die twice in my life. This time and the first bout with Kidney stones! Crawling on my hands and knees from the parking lot into the building at work (I was first to arrive so no one there to help) barfing the whole way, crying like a three year old from the pain, into the building, pulled a phone off a desk as I was writhing in pain. Called the wife, told her I was dying and she needed to call 911 and then come say good bye.

    I'm such a wimp!
     
  15. TexanRon

    TexanRon Come 'n Take It

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    I feel your pain. The same thing appened to me a few years ago. Literally fell out of car in parking lot. Never have felt such pain.
     
  16. .264 magnum

    .264 magnum CLM

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    My mom had this done ~8 mos. ago. She was in the hospital about 24 hours. She was 66 at the time and had just beaten Hodgkin's Disease. She felt a little weak for a few days and she would agree that the procedure itself isn't a lot of fun but it is not especially tough. She was walking for exercise in a week and walking hard two weeks later.

    You'll be fine and you'll fell better afterwards.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2010
  17. vikingsoftpaw

    vikingsoftpaw DEPLORABLE ME!

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    My BIL had the same thing. Because of his family history of heart disease, he is to have a stress test every five years. His first was at 35 y.o. His cardiography showed clear. False positives are somewhat common.

    I hope that is your case as well. It's nothing to be taken lightly. I lost an old childhood friend three years ago, massive coronary. He was 42 years old.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2010
  18. Squaw Man Wolfer

    Squaw Man Wolfer

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    I had one, and, while not pleasant, wasn't really that big of a deal, other than being uncomnfortable about having another man play around that close to my balls. The recovery period, waiting for that artery to heal, took time and caused concern (for me), but went well for me.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2010
  19. Tramp

    Tramp

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    Ok just had this done same thing bad ? stress test the hardest part is the prep and thats the nurse you get you can watch if you want or chose lala land my choice in at 7 am out by 4pm doing basic normal non strainging things by noon the next day saturday wendsday back shooting so no a deal for me
     
  20. Bill Powell

    Bill Powell Cross Member CLM

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    I had them go exploring in me. They went to my heart and found total blockage, excet where heart had started building its own by-pass. This was befroe I ever had a stress test. Thsi was fairly uneventful.

    When I went in for the stress test. They asked me how i wanted to do it, chemical or treadmill, reminding me that not many people did the treadmill. I told them I was tougher than two square yards of buckskin. After about two minutes on that thing the roadway went vertical and my legs just stopped working. I said, "Okay, damn your eyes, shoot me with chemicals." They did, and I thought I was dying, a weird hollow rushing sound, and I swear I could see a light at the end of the long hall-way. I was on the verge of absolute panic til I heard one of the doctors say that it looked pretty normal so far. That one little sentence brought me down off the brink of panic, and I calmed right down and let the chemicals run their course.