A Week on from Diagnosis.

Its been a week on from my Angiogram and from being officially diagnosed with Coronary Heart Disease. I wanted to do a brief post to share my experience to hopefully help others. Initially I was worried as I was feeling mild chest pains after the Angiogram and for about 4-5 days afterwards. Well the good news is the pains have gone now and I'm feeling somewhere near normal. If someone has the same experience its likely nothing to worry about. I put it down to the fact the heart doesn't like to played around with :-).

I'm now on 4 different meds - atorvastatin(for lowering cholesterol), aspirin (for bloodthinning), ramipril(1.25mg) and Bisoprolol(2.5mg) for Hypertension.

On the day after the angiogram, my daily bisoprolol was increased from 1.25mg to 5mg. I noticed after taking it this that when I got up I would initially feel a little light headed and dizzy so with the permission of the doctor I reduced it to 2.5Mg and no longer get the dizziness. Yesterday evening I started to take an additional beta blocker called ramipril (1.25mg). This has caused a small bit of nausea but nothing other than that at the moment. I have been advised to initially take this in the evening. Hopefully my body will eventually get used to it and I will be able to take it in the morning along with my other cocktails :-).

Anyway, at the time of the Angiogram, I was given a number of options, one of which was a triple heart bypass. After a week's deliberation and talking it over with my wife, I have decided to go for the bypass. I'm just waiting on an appointment with the surgeon now. I know what awaits me after the bypass but I am feeling better now that I have made the decision. l will post later on any new developments.

I always used to joke to my wife by calling her sick note as she was normally the poorly one. The jokes now on me :-). He's got a funny sense of humour god aint he? :-)

Best of luck to everyone.

Cheers

Nick

26 Replies

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  • Hi Nick, thanks for the update. You are the first person I know who is on the same pills as I am!

    Right, ramipril, can give you a very dry irritating cough, if you are really lucky this will strike just as you are dropping off to sleep. I always try and keep a glass of water by the bed for these occassions.

    The bypass, well you have read, digested and taken that decision, it is a journey and the road to recovery for you has begun. I hope your wait is short and if you can try not to focus on that date, look for another say three months post op and plan something for that day with your family.

    Rooting for you and yours

    Mark

  • Thanks Mark. I haven't got the cough yet but its early days, thanks for the water tip! I've only experienced a slight nausea from it at the moment.

    Good advice, I think I will book a slap up meal for the family and me to enjoy once I'm recovered from the op.

    Cheers again Mark and I wish you all the best!

  • Hi dagger.

    Ramiprilat at night is advised as it can drop your blood pressure quite quickly. I was taking mine in the morning but kept on fainting. I now take it just before bed, although like Skid I have a dry cough I found it more reassuring that if my blood pressure drops at least I'm asleep.

  • Thanks two bells. I think I might stick to taking it at night then. Don't want to faint at work :-).

  • If the ramipril still causes a problem speak to your gp cos they might try you on a different medication that doesn't have the same side effects.

  • Will do. Thanks Fredders.

  • Hi, hope you get on ok with all the medication and do speak to the GP or pharmacist if you have problems with them.I was diagnosed with Coronary heart disease over 2 years ago and had a stent fitted. I am on the same medication plus a few more. I have come of the asprin and gone back on clopidogrel. I am having a few problems now and have started on isosobide mononitrate, that caused some problems, had 40 mg once a day, very bad headaches, went unto 10 mg twice a day, not strong enough, now 20 mg twice a day and no headaches.

    Going for a exercise ecg tomorrow, wonder what that shows up and how I will have to wait to hear the results.

    All the best, Anke

  • Thanks Anke. I've been experiencing a mild headache the last few days. Don't know what drug is causing it but I will speak to my GP next week when I see her.

    I think its a matter of getting the amount right to minimise the side effects as you have done with the isosobide mononitrate.

    Good luck for tomorrow. I'd be really interested on hearing the results of your ecg? If you can post to let us know when you get time of course and good luck with it! I hope you pass with flying colours.

  • I will let you know how it goes. At times I get pins and needles type pain below left shoulder, but it goes away when I stop doing things, don't know if that is from the angina. Hope to find out soon.

  • I really hope you get to the bottom of it Anke123. Best of luck.

  • Don't know if this may help you, but I was taken of all my meds for 4 weeks and put back on one at a time. This is so they could find out which one was causing what side affect. Hence, I now know which meds are OK for me. It does appear that many people have been given the same drugs as we have, but it does make you wonder if these are the cheapest drugs which are not necessarily the best drugs available.

  • Thanks for the advice Two bells. That's a very good idea about being put on medication one at a time. At the moment, I'm experiencing two mild side effects. One is a mild headache which for some reason comes on around midday (easily resolved with Paracetamol but a little bit annoying nonetheless). The other is restless legs. Nothing really to complain about I guess considering they are helping me.

    Its interesting that you say about the cheapest drugs. I remember the consultant said that if I was to go on the Trial, I would be given the best drugs available so there are obviously better ones out there. A dangling carrot for me perhaps?, but I'd prefer to be in charge of my own destiny (apart from being at the mercy of the surgeons :-).

    Cheers

    Nick

  • The restless legs are mainly caused by the statin. The problem I found was that it was also. Very painful especially when trying to walk. Ramipril is causing an irritating cough so I have stopped taking it. I am waiting for Catdiologist to call me back with an alternative. The wait for surgery can't be easy, I had a heart attack, didn't even feel it then rushed to hospital, had a triple bypass a few days later. It was so fast, one minute I thought I was relatively fit and well, the next I needed major surgery. I never had time to process what was happening, but I am recovering well now, but it coming up 6mths post op. Its a bit of a wait, but will be worth it.

  • Thanks Two bells, I thought it might be the statins causing the restless legs. I will mention it to the nurse when I see her on Thursday.

    What a massive shock it must of been for you (and I thought I had it bad). One minute you are fine and the next a sledgehammer hits you. I'm glad you are recovering well. You have given me a lot of inspiration for when I have my op.

    Cheers

    Nick

  • Hi Nick, it's a bumpy ride lots of ups and downs. I have really turned a corner now and during the early days I did feel sorry for myself lol

  • Feeling sorry for yourself is only natural. I've been doing alot of that lately :-). Feeling a bit better about things now.

    When something like this happens it makes you realise not to worry too much about the small things :-)

  • It's easier said than done though. I'm just grateful I've come through it fairly well, but I did have post op kidney problems and pleurisy so when they tell you to cough after surgery make sure you cough well!! even though it hurts. The best advice I can give you is just go with it. And talk about how you are feeling now and after. Looking back I thought omg, but there was no choice and the end result hopefully many years of good health.

    Best wishes

    Fran

  • That's true, you can't change the way you are. I've always been a worrier. Probably the cause of my health issues.

    I will make sure I cough! Thanks for the tip!

    Glad to hear you are recovering well now.

    Cheers

    Nick

  • I can relate to the pains after the angiogram mine have now settled down after a week.

    Best of luck with the bypass Mate - keep us posted 👍🏻

  • I know what you mean about the pains. It worried me initially as they made no mention that I would experience them. Thanks mate, yeah, no probs, I will keep you posted.

  • Hi Nick

    its good to hear what decision you have made, thats the way i would have gone myself.

    i was on ramapril to start with and it did give an awful cough and funny throatandwheni spoke to others yhey had had the same experience, but i spoke to the Rehab group staff and told me to see my GP and change to candersartin, which has been fine and the cough went but if you get on ok with it then no problem staying on it.

    What part of the country do you live in? which hospital will you have the op in?

    I am under the Royal Brompton in London, where i had a visit on monday to see my new consultant, which went ok but its just that waiting game and continue to keep myself active and healthy to give myself the best chance of a good speedy recovery afterwards.

    again thanks for the update Nick and good luck with it all, keep healthy

    God bless to you too a dyour gamily as you continue this new journey into the unknown.

    Charlie

  • Hi Charlie,

    Good to hear from you. Yes, I thought it would be the best chance for me to have a better quality of life and reduce the risk of having a heart attack (which Bypass's have statically proven to do - been doing a bit of homework :-). Got to go with statistics.

    I live in Thirsk in North Yorkshire but am originally from Dagenham in Essex. My op will be at St James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough. Where do you live Charlie - I'm assuming London? I have been told its about a 2-3 month waiting list so a fair bit to go yet. Its now a waiting game, something you know all too well :-). I hope you get seen to sooner.

    Yeah, I was thinking along the same lines as you, trying to keep as fit as possible in order to recover quicker and hopefully get back to normal as soon as possible.

    Glad the appointment with the consultant went well!! Keep healthy too!.

    God bless to you and your family.

    Nick

  • Hi Nick

    i actually live in Basingstoke but the Brompton is the hospital my local hospital refer to for Major heart issues, not the easiest place to get to, i dont fancy driving there as dont travel so well, too much traffic and cause too much stress to drive so took public transport, which wasnt too bad.

    i am hoping for a cancellation, but that means so poor soul who has been waiting longer than i have has to wait a bit longer for what ever reason.

    God bless you too and your family as they wait with you, and hope all goes well

    Charlie

  • Hi Charlie,

    Berkshire eh? I used to work in Bracknell which is fairly near Basingstoke as the crow flies.

    London seems to get busier and busier so I wouldn't fancy driving it either.

    I've got an echocardiagram on 26th October, with a bit of luck it will be clear. Then its a matter of waiting. Apart from the Angina, I feel fine healthwise so thats good news.

    I really hope you get seen to as soon as possible Charlie :-). God bless you and your family also :-).

    Nick

  • Could you ask for a referral to Southampton General instead? I would think that might be easier to get to.

  • I could probably ask to be refered to Southampton but i think at this stage i would be starting at bottom of cue again, as well as i know a number of people who went to Brompton and are pleased with what they went through. the Brompton is one of top in the country for Heart issues, so feel i want to stay there.

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