Caught a cold after AVR and CABG 4 we... - British Heart Fou...

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Caught a cold after AVR and CABG 4 weeks ago

My husband has caught a cold after his surgery 4 weeks ago, or we think it is a cold - really cold and can’t warm up, exhausted and in bed, runny nose and off his food.

Is there anything I need to keep an eye on or just let it run it’s course?

10 Replies
oldestnewest

Just do the pillow on chest when sneezing and ring the ward or GP for advice when and if you need any . I caught a shed load of illnesses and ailments and had antibiotics for a bit of green sputum in lungs 2 days after the cabg .

I got temps and shivers on and off for first 7 weeks . Week 9 was the changer for me and I finally got on the treadmill :)

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Thanks, very helpful, I appreciate it

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Poor guy, sneezing and coughing with his breast bone not yet healed can't be much fun.

I don't think there's any alternative to letting it run its course. Like they always say, a cold lasts two weeks if you do nothing, and it lasts a fortnight if you see a doctor and take a load of medicines!

As to feeling cold and tired, that's completely normal. A critical factor in your husband's recovery will be his walking and breathing exercises. Your lungs take a real battering during open heart surgery, with lots of small patches of micro collapse. Reflating the lungs via brisk walking and breathing exercises is the main thing determining how well you feel and how fast you recover. The target is a daily 30 minute brisk walk after six weeks.

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Can you walk too much?

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I suppose you can overdo any exercise, but as long as you don't tackle the Pennine Way straight after hospital I doubt walking puts you at that much risk!

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Get checked out - friend of ours was the same - turned out he had an infection and he ended up back in hospital on IV antibiotics for several weeks. Lucky the a&e nurse had seen someone else with the same.

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Most colds are viral so won't respond to anti biotics but check his temperature and if it is above normal seek medical advice - paracetamol will be the safest medication to help but make sure he is not already taking anything that already has paracetamol in it. If he develops a cough again ask medical advice especially with any discoloured sputum as Deano says antibiotics may be prescribed. I've found a sterimar nasal spray helps - it's just purified water (not decongestant spray) that rinses away nasal secretions and can help, you can get it from Superdrug boots or on Amazon. Lots of warm drinks maybe sweets like jakemans or honey and lemon.

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Make it urgent- he is very vulnerable to infection at present. Disregard the fact that today is a bank holiday and get checked out.

Best wishes.

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Hi Oldmasons. My husband caught a cold not long after his quad bypass. He blamed me of course!

Plenty of fluids and paracetamol did the trick. Menthol crystals in hot water worked to relieve a bunged up nose. I just put the bowl on a side table in the bedroom and the lounge. There are water based relievers in the form of a spray that will also relieve congestion in the nose. Our GP advised a little salt and a pinch of sugar dissolved in boiling water. Let it go cold and sniff it up. That really does work.

If he's not improving a little after a week or so, I'd ask GP advice.

Good luck and give him our best wishes (the same wishes go to you too). xx

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Update - the suspected cold turned out to be a chest infection, unfortunately.

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