Just post CRT-D OP: Hi all I have just... - British Heart Fou...

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Just post CRT-D OP

Heartlady1 profile image

Hi all

I have just found this forum.... which is a greet support network.

I have had a Crt d implant a week ago... and in the main all has gone very well. I do feel the device with can feel uncomfortable at times... especially at bed time. And i get a feeling of teaviness when i bend forward. Does this ease with time? Have others experienced this?

Also although generally I am feeling very well (which is fab) I do feel pain when I breath in when lay down and first thing in morning. This is more resporatory and not heart I 5hink. Just wonder if this is again a normal short term op feeling.

And last question... it's only been a week... but work asking when I am going vacs. I am thinking of going back after another week off... when I ask Dr's they don't give me any recommended time for recovery. Happy to go back to work but don't want to go back too early and push back my recovery either.

Thank you for any help on these issues... which are small in themselves... but would be lovely and give me more confidence to get others views. Many thanks

12 Replies

I haven't had one fitted but it has been descused by my GP, so can't advice I'm afraid.

Welcome to our club, glad to have you on board.

Great you are over the worst of it & sounds like it is all going well.

Well done lovey, Jo 😊

Heartlady1 profile image
Heartlady1 in reply to Sina-6491

Thanks Sina for your lovely welcome....and yes as you say it is nice to be on the other side of the op. And really glad I gave found this site.... a great positive support group 😀.

I have named my device Kurt.... thought it would give him a personality rather than being a box. Gotta embrace the change... and apart from the above queries I am already feeling a lot more alert and more energy.... thanks to Kurt 😀


Sina-6491 profile image
Sina-6491 in reply to Heartlady1

That's a great idea 😆

skid112 profile image
skid112Heart Star

Hi heartlady and welcome.

Like Sina I haven't undergone this but we have a few here who have and they will be along later to provide their experiences. As for work, I'd always suggest you go at your pace rather than theirs, it's your health and if you feel well enough then by all means return

Heartlady1 profile image
Heartlady1 in reply to skid112

Thank you fir your support. It's massively appreciated and helps not feeling alone with all of this change. 😀 thank you x

Hello, I have a CRT-D too. I had mine fitted in 2013. I found the device very uncomfortable at first, especially for sleep, and kind of heavy, as you say. This eased gradually until I wasn't really aware of it at all. Now I can sleep in any position and be perfectly comfortable. I only really notice it's there if I stretch my left arm across my chest (and I mean REALLY stretch) or if I'm pressing up against something and the battery digs in a bit, but generally am not aware it's there at all.

As for going back to work, I think I told my employers that I'd expect to be off for a fortnight and I thought I was being quite generous to myself with that. I ended up taking a bit longer (maybe six weeks in total?) because I just felt shattered and was quite anxious and depressed. I really worried about the defibrillator going off and what would happen if I was shocked when I was on my own etc. I used my time off (when I wasn't looking after my then 18-month-old child - no wonder I was tired!) to get out and about on my own, build up my confidence. I spent many an afternoon in the cinema, which was a nice way to be on my own but out and about. I felt like a bit of a skiver, but it really did help me. I've been lucky with my employers, they've always been really supportive and understanding, so it didn't make me too anxious to take the time I felt I needed. Don't feel like there is a "right" amount of time to take off, I think the procedure affects everybody differently, you should go back whenever you feel ready.

I don't remember experiencing pain when breathing. Probably nothing to worry about, but you could always get it checked out anyway.

I really love my device now, feeling bad I've never given it a name! :) I'm sure the resynchronising aspect of the device has eased my symptoms and my heart function improved (the only time it has improved) in the six months after having the device fitted. I still haven't ever been shocked and will be very happy if it continues that way, but I'm not scared of the prospect now, just feel reassured by the fact the defibrillator is there if I need it. And it's a great conversation piece, people are always fascinated to discover I have it.

Feel free to message me any time if you have any questions, and best of luck x

Thank you so much Laura.... that's really helpful and reassuring. And gosh you are amazing dealing with both the device and having an 18 month old to look after!

Really good to hear also that you get used to the device and the discomfort eases. Phew! So Kurt really will be my best friend and guardian angel. 😀.

Re work I think I will return sooner rather than later as I am sitting here worrying about leads coming out and defibrillator setting off... which although is normal is perhaps not a healthy positive mindset. I think work will take my mind off these worries.... and make me feel that I am getting things back to normal. I see people do get down and depressed..understandable... but I want to try to avoid by thinking how lucky I am as now much safer with Kurt in.... and already feeling more energy. Being home is making me feel isolated and different.... so I will see about a stage come back to work and thank you again.... your comments make me realise the things I am experiencing are normal. Thank you xx

laura_dropstitch profile image
laura_dropstitchHeart Star in reply to Heartlady1

It's great you're able to see things so positively already. We really are better off with our devices, you're right, but it took me a long time to feel that. I love alone time, but if being at work makes it easier for you, then you're right to want to head back. Would there be an option to do a phased return over a couple of weeks? That would give you some routine back, but give you a bit of time to get used to things. Ultimately, you know best what is going to work for you and what you need. Good luck!

PS My mum helped A LOT with my daughter, hence the freedom for cinema trips etc! :)

I had my icd fitted in Jan and went back after 6 weeks all gd so far touch wood

That's really positive news 😀 thank you. I am a nightmare as I do tend to overdo things ... and do need to give myself time. So thanks for your feedback. I will now NOT feel guilty about having a second week off...will spend my time getting out more. Bus into town.... venturing out without feeling guilty. I now realise that is also part of my recovery process.

and will then organise a staged return to work. Keeping well in the early stages is key. And this site has been great already for making me feel included not isolated 😀

Hope you continue to feel well...which is our end goal 😀😀


Hi heart lady, many years ago my husband was left paralysed after spinal surgery, we had two babies at the time, he had an orange badge back then, but an old man said to us why are you parking here your not disabled etc, etc. I just told him, well actually he is. He's just had two new wooden legs fitted as they chopped his real legs off (they hadn't really), but the old man was so apologetic. When we left the car park we laughed so much. I always find humour a coping mechanism. I am registered blind and I have people say to me quite often 'Oh you don't look blind' my reply now is 'I didn't realise you where an ophthalmologist' leaves people dumbfounded and this makes me chuckle. I never understand why the general population think it's their right to criticise people using a blue badge. It's nobody's business, but yours.

Hi heartlady1 hope you are well. Had crt-d fitted just over 2 weeks ago have heart failure. Can you tell me what to expect please. Thank you

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