3 months post stents

Morning world.

A little inspiration hopefully, 51 years old Firefighter, very active runner and cyclist, not big drinker, not overweight, stopped smoking 10 years ago, not that bad a diet, that was until 27th April when I found myself in Basildon Cardio having 2 stents fitted.

To say I was in a state of disbelief would be an understatement, discharged after 3 days, the hospital was amazing, personally I can't thank the NHS enough.

It hits your loved ones hard too, my wife went through hell and I didn't really understand it because I was so wrapped up in how I was feeling. Mr Selfish feeling sorry for himself.

Once home, I felt completely isolated from any sort of advice or guidance other than what I found on the internet.

The hard bit was being told to rest, I didn't quite realise how much rest they meant, typical male found myself back in hospital 3 weeks after with a free paramedic fast car drive, discharged the same day, nothing wrong other than "overdoing it".

Started cardio rehab on week 6 and it was fantastic to do some sort of fitness again, the team here in Clacton on Sea are amazing.

Now 3 months in, 3 weeks left of cardio. I have an option to do another 4 weeks which I will be doing.

I'm currently back to running for 30 minutes very slowly and cycling but I feel I've turned the corner.

Any advice,...... research your medication, I had the Ramipril cough which was a nightmare, changed to Candesartan and the cough went within a few weeks, you will bleed more than normal if you cut yourself and you will bruise very very easily.

The biggest problem for me was in my head, anger, resentment, depression to start with, it does go, as you improve your moods do.

I still get running twinges and feelings throughout the day and they do scare me, also if I push to hard I know it the next day.

Do cardio classes, don't skip them.

Im still worried that every twinge is another heart attack, but that's part of it I suppose.

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  • thanks for sharing Carlobar, very very helpful

  • Great post Carlobar. The first few months after an episode are scary and I'm sure it will help others to understand some of what to expect.

  • Yeah, we all know where you are coming from & yes it will get better a little day by day.

    But thank you for sharing, because some people who are just starting on this road. Will realise what they are feeling & what they are hoing through, is really quite normal.

    Keep up the good work.

    Also, don't take it for granted that your wife & family know how much you appreciate there support.

    Make sure you tell them :)

  • I was much the same. Two stents after being admitted to hospital with crescendo/unstable angina. NHS fantastic. 11 days in hospital and very achy/sore in chest on discharge (attributed to anxiety/muscle tension) & very wary of exercising due to discomfort. Persevered though & improvement rapid & quite dramatic. Felt awful in head at time: lifestyle rapidly reassessed & turned on head. Very depressed at time but put this down to getting used to whole lot of medication plus realising I was indeed very very mortal (an old Army mate of mine felt very similar after his event so stopped taking his meds & quickly felt v much better...but wouldn't necessarily reccomend that!). Lost 5 stone in 5 months through diet change & exercise & cholesterol now at 3.0 & waist 32". Did cardi rehab phase 3 (v helpful) & now do phase 4 once a week. Fitter now than for 35 years. My event was 2 years ago this Oct & with support of wife & NHS have transformed my life. Am hitting 60 in 2 months & background of Army (infantry) & 30 years Met Police. Used to be rugby prop forward...not any more!

    Things may well seem dark at first but they do get better. Just don't give up or lose hope.

  • Hi Carlobar - really great to hear your story, and happy to see that you'r doing better. Congratulations on getting back to your exercise, that's brilliant!

    I think it's really common for people to feel isolated after any sort of heart event, but when people like you tell a little bit of what happened to them on places like HealthUnlocked it can make a real difference to others. Thanks for posting, and hopefully you'll keep us up to date with your progress too!

  • Hi Carlobar, thanks for sharing, it is difficult at first after an heart event.

    A year after I had a stent fitted I was invited to attend a 6 week course for people with a long term health condition. Any long term condition, advice on how to get on, medication, exercise, healthy eating and how to deal with emotions.

    I went on the course, did think I new most of it, but was surprised by the emotional side of things. At the introductions it was said you may feel angry that it has happened to you, tell then that had not crossed my mind and yes I did feel angry, I think I had pushed negative thoughts away and not dealt with them.

    So it is important to share these thoughts and feelings with others and this is a great site for doing so. I have carried on with cardiac rehab phase 4 once or twice a week and feel much fitter now.

    So keep it up and all the best.

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