Pericarditis: After being diagnosed... - British Heart Fou...

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Pericarditis

Gaz_chops profile image

After being diagnosed with Pericarditis on Monday, just had an echo. to check for fluid.

Saw consultant straight after, said there is no fluid showing which is good news, also said that the cause is prob a virus, possibly COVID and that I must rest and NO exercise, only ‘gentle’ walking until breathing improves, which could be a few weeks 😢

One bit of good news, EF was 47% which is up slightly from ~45% on previous 2 echoes 😀

Time for a siesta, then the gym......... going for a gentle stroll on the treadmill and do a bit of people watching.

52 Replies

Make sure you do Gaz_chops, regards Sheena

Thanks, I am good at doing as I’m told when it comes to recovery, don’t want to prolong it 🥴

Great news no fluid, take it easy.

Best wishes Pauline

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to 080311

Thanks Pauline

Milkfairy profile image
MilkfairyHeart Star

Hopefully Sunnie2day will be along to share her wisdom of living with Pericarditis with you soon.

They really do mean REST and NO exercise😊

I listen to comedy podcasts when I am on resting duties.

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to Milkfairy

Thanks

Sunnie2day profile image
Sunnie2day in reply to Gaz_chops

That visit to the gym...how did that work out for you? Despite your incredible luck (no effusion), usually when in an acute pericarditis state even a 'gentle walk' (especially on a treadmill, ask me how I know this) can cause a serious setback.

With my recurrent pericarditis, when in an acute flare I know one good day can lead to thinking I'm recovered - I then try to do some catch-up including increased 'gentle exercise' and end up spending the next 3-7 days recovering.

Good days which lead to several bad days - part and parcel of a bout with pericarditis.

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to Sunnie2day

I didn’t chance the gym yesterday, I am pretty good at listening to my body and it was shouting no way!

I’ve had it for a few weeks now, the consultant thinks I’m on the mend and said as no fluid then I can try a gentle walk, but said as you have, if I suffer afterwards then it’s too soon!

What’s making it worse is I had been doing so well, gaining weight and lifting more weights and doing more cardio 🥲

I REALLY feel for you as I’ve only had it a couple of weeks!

Sunnie2day profile image
Sunnie2day in reply to Milkfairy

Surfacing but only momentarily - still fighting my own acute flare of this wretched condition and energy levels are very, very low at the mo. sigh

080311 profile image
080311 in reply to Sunnie2day

So sorry you are still not over this flare up, it as been so long you must be worn out. Hoping you are feeling more yourself very soon.

Best wishes Pauline

Sunnie2day profile image
Sunnie2day in reply to 080311

Pauline, I am genuinely sick of being sick. There are only so many crochet blankets one home and several charities can take, also, I've discovered there really is an end to the Internet when daytime TV is completely boring and I've watched all the box sets!

080311 profile image
080311 in reply to Sunnie2day

Life can certainly kick us when we are down sometimes. You are sorely missed on the forum but you have to conserve your energy on getting well. You are certainly in my thoughts.

Pauline

Sunnie2day profile image
Sunnie2day in reply to 080311

Thank-you :) :)

HHH2017 profile image
HHH2017 in reply to Sunnie2day

So sorry to hear you are still struggling. This seems to have been a very severe reoccurance.

Your advice & support is, as always, spot on. Take care x

Sunnie2day profile image
Sunnie2day in reply to HHH2017

I've been hesitant to say this publicly - but I was doing rather well until I had the second jab. Within a week I was 'down for the count' and am still trying to get my head above water.

LOL (but not really funny), I have deliberately curtailed my participation on the forum for fear of moaning and blaming the vaccine. I am a full-on pro-vaxxer so I don't want to put anyone off having the jabs...but I'm thinking those booster jabs might be something for me to give a miss to.

HHH2017 profile image
HHH2017 in reply to Sunnie2day

Oh no! What a rotten time you are having. Im provax too but lots to weigh up and individual circumstances vary.

Hope the light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter 🙏🏼 x

Milkfairy profile image
MilkfairyHeart Star in reply to Sunnie2day

Sunnie2day

I am sorry you are only able to surface briefly.

Boredom is a problem for me. I can't read when I am in a flare.

You can only listen to so many podcasts.

The weather this summer ( what summer?) is hitting me hard too.

Wishing you more energy and well being soon.

So sorry to hear this but good theres no fluid build up.

Can be slow progress even without other complications so PLEASE do rest. It can be one step forward & a dozen back if you over do it during hearts recovery. Good luck 🤞🏽

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to HHH2017

Thanks

Good luck for for a fast recovery. Hopefully you'll be cranking up the treadmill speed before too long!

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to Chappychap

Cheers

I was diagnosed with pericarditis and an effusion last December , as I didn’t know how important it was to rest I ended up making my condition very severe and had two more emergency admissions to CCU , Christmas Eve I ended up being rushed in on blues and twos and the fluid had made me very unwell and I needed a week of IV antibiotics plus so much more medication . I still recovering now , please don’t overdo things , that was the mistake I made . I was told I’d be recovered on 6 months but I’m not there yet . Take it very slow at the gym . Glad you have no fluid but be careful , it’s very early days for you x

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to Westie2012

Thanks, hopefully you'll get there soon.

I wasn't allowed out the house! No exercise. Please don't set yourself back. It takes a long time to overcome this without complications. I felt so ill I couldn't swallow let alone walk round the coffee table so I guess you're not feeling like that. But do take care. Your heart needs to rest and heal.

I've had man-flu, this doesn't seem so bad 🤣........................ Joking

I think i'm lucky so far (touch wood), i've had no real chest pains, mostly flu like aches/pains, sore throat, the worst is the breathlessness, everything wipes me out 😢

Will only do gentle walking till I feel up to more.

Thanks

Gaz

Even if the diagnosis is not 100%, at least you have a route to recovery. Take it easy and I hope you are feeling much better soon.

Gerald

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to GWP1952

Thanks Gerald

Sorry to hear about this, hope you get over it as soon as you can. Why go on a treadmill for a walk are you expecting bad weather? lol

Cheers.

I actually prefer walking on the treadmill if I'm walking by myself, it feels less lonely!

Plus as i'm only going for a 'stroll' I can watch something on my iPad if I get bored people watching.

Great news about yr EF 👍🏻

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to Boo_boo1

Cheers mate, only a small increase but I was quite pleased when she said 47%

Boo_boo1 profile image
Boo_boo1 in reply to Gaz_chops

I’d take any increase bud, it’s definitely the amount of exercise you do that’s getting the results on EF. My last MRI my EF was at 46%… so your in the lead 😅. I’m seeing my cardiologist next week so I’m hoping he suggests getting another stress mri done so I can check my latest EF out. I’ll be gutted if it’s gone down 😏

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to Boo_boo1

Same for me if it stays same or small increase i'm more than happy.

P.s. hope you overtake me 🤞

Excuse my ignorance but what is EF? I had pericarditis diagnosed in March & seems to be more or less ok now. I had it 6 weeks after the 1st Pfizer jab & I'm not risking any further jabs. I had an echo follow up last week but haven't had the results yet.

Milkfairy profile image
MilkfairyHeart Star in reply to

EF Ejection fraction, it is a measurement of how well the heart muscle is pumping blood.

Normal EF is roughly between 50% and 70 % ish.

Have you discussed your hesitancy about taking up an offer of a second Covid vaccine with your GP or Cardiologist?

in reply to Milkfairy

Ok thanks for the info. No I haven't discussed it with a GP recently. The consultant at the Royal Free said the auto immune reaction would be in response to a virus in the previous 2 weeks & that the jab was 6 weeks ago so wouldn't be the cause. I have read since that reactions have been recorded up to 7 weeks after the jab. Obviously I can't be sure the jab caused it but considering recent reports have stated that 62% of hospitalisations have been in those double jabbed, I'm not at all sure I want to risk having any more. Also there have been reports that a second jab isn't recommended if the 1st has caused issues. I'm not anti-vax but I am concerned that significant side effects are being under reported.

Milkfairy profile image
MilkfairyHeart Star in reply to

I am a long term patient at the Royal Free.

I would really encourage you to speak to a Cardiologist again.

I had a reaction to my first AZ vaccine which made my vasospastic angina unstable along with causing arrthymias.

I actually feel over a few times even breaking my ribs.

I was in hospital for 9 days.

End March/ early April.

My Cardiologist thought the stress on my immune system caused these problems. Any infection such as flu or Covid etc would be much much worse.

My side effect was reported, my Cardiologist took it seriously and I have had an echo since, waiting for a 24 hour ECG. I am also being seen in clinic more frequently.

I had my second AZ vaccine without any problems. I was fully prepared for another reaction.

The Royal Free had some of the highest number of Covid patients in the UK. They are a centre of excellence for Cardiology and infectious diseases.

in reply to Milkfairy

I'm sorry to hear about your unpleasant reactions. Thanks for your comment that the 2nd AZ jab didn't cause you any further reactions. I'll mention having a booster to the doctor when I hear the results of my echo, see if they can recommend a diffferent vaccine perhaps.

NotDeadYet7 profile image
NotDeadYet7 in reply to

I had my first AZ jab on 26/03/21. Developed heart pain within a week. Collapsed in the street on 20/04/21 with crushing chest pain, racing heart and breathlessness. Was rushed into A&E by ambulance with what was apparently an SVT arrhythmia (223bpm). Troponin T raised to 28. On a follow-up echocardiogram I was found to have a pericardial effusion. I was told to rest and take ibuprofen. Matters got worse. In and out of hospital (A&E) 6 times thereafter with chest pain and breathing issues connected with pericarditis. Started on Colchicine at the end of June. Much improved after 2 weeks although the drug causes me to have an upset tummy.

Had a follow up echocardiogram on 06/08/21 which showed effusion had gone so came off the Colchicine thereafter but 2 weeks later I was back to square one with arrhythmias, heart pain (constant), exhaustion and breathlessness. So I’m back on the Colchicine again and suffering the side effects of the drug.

I have been advised NOT to have my second vaccine. I’m very pro-vaccination but feel the second one might kill me.

My fiancé suffered a huge heart attack after his second Pfizer vaccine and ended up in intensive care in King’s College Hospital London. He had three heart surgeries. We are both in our early 50s. He was previously fit and healthy.

I had Covid very severely in February 2020 and suffered a collapsed lung although not hospitalised. They now think I probably suffered low level heart inflammation from the virus and then the vaccine has made things so much worse by creating a huge autoimmune response in my body.

I’m a life time non smoker and non drinker. I was fit and well before Covid. I’ve been ill with Long Covid ever since my initial infection and now my heart is suffering too. It’s not good. I bitterly regret having the vaccine.

in reply to NotDeadYet7

Well, you have confirmed my thoughts that I shouldn't risk having any further covid vaccinations, so thanks for your very detailed reply. Obviousy I hope you make a full recovery from long Covid and that both you and your fiance will recover from your heart problems caused by the vaccine.

I think I've been off the colchicine for about 9 weeks now and I haven't really had any further problems (yet) but I'm waiting to hear the results of my echo on 22 September.

I'm assuming you have been advised not to have your second vaccine by your consultant. I don't even feel like asking my doctor for their opinion as I'm sure they will advise me to have it, but I will mention your problems and see what they say to that! I expect it will be the usual line that the risk is extremely low.

My son & daughter are in their 30s and they haven't been jabbed. My son is a vehement anti-vaxer but up to now I haven't been as they seem to reduce the risk of serious illness for most. Or at least that's what the media keeps telling us!

NotDeadYet7 profile image
NotDeadYet7 in reply to

I’m very sorry to hear of your similar situation. One of the doctors in A&E at East Surrey Hospital advised me against my second vaccine due to the risk of further heightening the inflammation in my heart. My GP advised me not to have it yet and to wait for my cardiologist to advise me accordingly. I will next be seeing him in a week or two.My partner lives in Bromley. He spoke to his cardiologist about my heart whilst he was still an inpatient at King’s. He was told they are seeing far too many patients with cardiac complications post vaccination and felt it would not be safe for me to have my second jab.

My youngest daughter is a nursing sister in a large UK hospital and was seconded onto ICU between March 2020 and January 2021 to nurse critically ill Covid patients, she has also advised me against another vaccine because of my heart. However, she has had both of her vaccinations. She had the AstraZeneca too but has suffered a lot of spontaneous bruising ever since. My other daughter and her partner are in their early 30s and are anti- vaxxers. My son who is 30 has had both of his (Pfizer).

I sincerely hope you continue on the road to a full recovery. Please do keep me updated. I only joined this forum today because I’m getting so scared about my cardiac health.

As I sit here typing my heart is fluttery and jittery and the pain radiates up from my heart towards my left clavicle. I feel somewhat weak and tired also.

I was teaching full time up to the point I became ill with Covid and now, because I’ve been too ill to work since Feb 24th 2020, I have lost my job through long term sickness. It’s a desperate situation.

I wish you well with your health 😊

in reply to NotDeadYet7

It's so interesting to hear what you have said about your partner's cardiologist remarks about seeing far too many patients with cardiac complications, as well as your daughter's comments, so I'm sticking well clear of any further jabs. We just don't hear this on the media do we. I guess the reason is that most seem to get away without any serious complications, although now it looks like Boris is going to make it available to 12-15 year olds as Covid restrictions are wrecking the economy. It doesn't look like he's being 'guided by the science' any more .

I'm so sorry to hear that you're still feeling very unwell. I was told to go back on the colchicine if I had any recurrence of symptoms, but apart from slight uncomfortable sensations, I'm more or less ok now. Perhaps you should discuss going back on the colchicine with your doctor? By the way I only took one 0.5mg pill a day as I am just under 70kg whereas I was actually presribed two a day. Google says only 2 a day if over 70kg. If they upset your tummy perhaps two a day is too strong, try one perhaps.

I'm 66 now so could retire but luckily the civil service have allowed me to work from home full time due to my situation which is good of them. I didn't fancy commuting on the tube! My daughter is currently doing TEFL working from home on Skype. I don't know whether you would consider that? It's a lot less pay than teaching of course.

Please let me know how you're getting on. I will let you know about my echo results when I hear in a couple of weeks time.

Milkfairy profile image
MilkfairyHeart Star in reply to

Can I ask why you are making a very important decision about your medical care by hear say rather than from advice from a registered medical professional?

in reply to Milkfairy

I will see what they say of course, but I think you'll find it's more than just 'hearsay'. There has been a lot of studies such as in the US & Israel of heart inflammation caused by the vaccine.

Milkfairy profile image
MilkfairyHeart Star in reply to

Most of these reports say the myocarditis is mild and most people recover.

Most of us here on the forum already have heart disease, which puts us at higher risk of becoming seriously ill or even dying from Covid.

This may well give us a different perspective.

As you know I had a reaction to my first AZ vaccine, I ended up in hospital.

My and my Cardiologist's reasoning was that the immune response of my body to the vaccine triggered my unstable angina.

Catching Covid itself would have been far far worse.

I hope you are able to make an evidence based discision based on good robost research.

in reply to Milkfairy

Yes I have read the research. Thank you for your concern.

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to

I do hope that you realise that your heart is potentially at a far greater risk from covid than it is from the vaccine!

in reply to Gaz_chops

Yes perhaps, but possibly if the first vaccine has nearly killed you perhaps one should think twice about having a further vaccination?

Gaz_chops profile image
Gaz_chops in reply to

I agree, but I would be seeking the advice of a medical professional, not basing my decision on the experience of someone else.

in reply to Gaz_chops

Well it was me that had a nasty reaction, so I'm not basing my opinion on what others have said. It is however interesting to hear what's actually going on in the real world rather than just what the media want us to believe.

Just to repeat, I'm not anti-vax. My opinion is have the first jab & if no reaction you're probably ok to have further jabs. If on the other hand you've had a bad reaction to the first jab, look at the real evidence of heart inflammation and deaths reported, & seriously consider whether a second is a good idea.

I also have a friend who had a heart attack & blood clots from the 2nd AZ vaccine , so actually knowing people who have had terrible reactions will obviously colour my view.

Take care Gaz and get back on that bike when the time is right. All the best, W

Cheers mate

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