Does our immune system work properly,... - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation
18,152 members12,309 posts

Does our immune system work properly, after a heart attack?


Two beautiful mornings ago, I went outside to cut back and clean out some overgrown trees and shrubs, It took about two hours I was pleased with the outcome.

That evening I went to bed, knowing I had a twelve hour shift the next day.

When I woke up, I felt a little itch/ bite on the underside of my leg. Nonetheless I got ready and went to work.

The little itch/ bite started to really sting and became hot, as I moved around. My leg started to become stiff and really red.

As I work in the NHS, I was able to asked one of the Drs in passing, if they could take a look at my leg.

They were able to tell me I had got an infection and that I needed antibiotics .

I finished work and went to urgent care. He was right I had been diagnosed with cellulitis.

My question is, am I now immunocompromised, since having my H.A last year?. I do feel illnesses I could normally bounce off, I am now having trouble with, I simply cannot anymore.

16 Replies

Good question I have often wondered that with no answers as likewise seem to be an open shop for bugs after my HA/CA.

in reply to KEN65

Thanks for your reply Ken.

If this is the case, I am looking for ways to protect myself, if this means a different type of diet or vitamin pills, I am happy to do it.

I do feel exposed since H.A. Every time I try putting it behind me, something else health wise pops up.

It’s not something I have heard/read about from my near 2 years on this site, so either it’s uncommon/rare or others are not mentioning it. Typically the drugs that are prescribed are not immunosuppressive so unlikely in that regard. Maybe you just got unlucky that day - I get bitten rather too often and only once have I had antibiotics, and that was years before any heart issues.

in reply to stevejb1810

Hi there,

I have seen bites go bad and turn into cellulitis before. I have had bites too and not given it a second look.

This was different, my leg changed on the hour every hour and the burning sensation , I knew this was different, but it’s only been since my H.A. Maybe it’s just my body , I am praying things stable out and this is just a blip.

Your experience has given me hope. Thank you

The immune system needs a healthy blood supply. People with diabetes are known to have impaired immunity.

Dr. Kraft hypothesised that those people with chronic heart disease have (undiagnosed) insulin-resistance.

Try following the ICS-NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme low-carb approach:

5 plus portions of fruit and veg per day (mainly berries and/or non-starchy veg), 5 to 10 portions of natural fat (not processed oils), 0 to 4 portions of low Gi carbohydrates, 2 to 3 portions of protein (fat intact), and 2 to 3 portions of full-fat dairy.

Hi there,

Thank you for your reply. It’s funny you mention diabetes, although I do not have the condition, I am high risk of developing it. ( yes my family inheritance to me ).

Last year I did have the , long term blood sugar glucose test and I was borderline.

I stopped taking sugar in any of my teas or foods . I have not developed the “ thirst” or any further symptoms.

It just does not feel like the previous me, who could rid any common ailments, before my H.A.

It’s just so nice to see everyone’s comments. I am not alone which makes this bearable .

Useful sugar equivalent infographics endorsed by NICE

I have not been tested yet to see if my immune system works properly yet.

I know I have an under active thyroid, so my body responds to things differently anyway.

It’s just lately I seem to be on a funny spiral, in the wrong direction.

I've a one-track mind with this, sorry. I think 'healthy eating' backed the wrong pony because of conflicts of interest, wasting people's time and lulling them into a false sense of doing something about their health by lowering (saturated) fat intake. People's expectations are also lowered, when they try it with limited/no success the blame goes on genes, bad luck and so on.

Whereas, I gained an interest in chronic ill-health from my parents (my mum suffering psychosis from until then undiagnosed diabetes, when I was only ten years old).

Lowering the stimulation of insulin actually enables us to age as we were meant to. Unfortunately, the closest we get to testing is via our blood glucose, which when it does show detriment is approaching the end-game as it's the last thing we want to go awry, and our hormones can be out of whack undetected for decades, trying to avoid that happening as a result of a daily onslaught of excess carbohydrate consumption compounded by removing fat from foods, impairing our ability to cope with stress.

I've noticed that since my HA a common cold knocks me for six.

But I have heard that antibiotics don't work if you are taking statins? Not sure if that is true tho🤔

in reply to Bradyblue

Definitely not true, my husband has been on statins for 15+ years. He has heart failure & infections can he quite dangerous for him, so he takes antibiotics when & if necessary.

in reply to Lezzers

I take statins too, but just since my H.A last year February. I have also suffered flu but it was prolonged after I had the flu jab. I have an under active thyroid , so my body behaves differently anyway. It just seems a lot more prone to infections etc lately .

in reply to Katydl

We were told a heart attack is a massive blow to the body, so I would think your immune system would be low for quite some considerable time

in reply to Lezzers

Now that makes sense. I wish they would have fore warned me, instead of saying every thing is ok. It is ok generally but with these intermittent hick ups, a bit more frequent than I am used to.

Thanks for making me feel reassured.

In the 6 months since my heart attack. I've only had one cold, and it only lasted for a few days whereas in the past a cold has hung on and on. I can't explain this except pointing the finger at my smoking habit of 30 a day prior to HA which stopped after HA

You may also like...