shellshocked!

hi,

I am a very recent recipient of my pacemaker- admitted suddenly into hospital 3 weeks ago, and had it fitted 2 weeks ago. I am just coming to terms with my implant, healing well and phasing myself back to work. I am considered fairly young to have this procedure (49), consider myself fit and active, and want to get back to "normal" asap -that is get to a point where I am not defining myself soley by the fact that I am a pacemaker user. I am interested in other people's experiences of recovery and adjustment - emotionally and physically. (I do appreciate my condition was found and treated early before more major problems set in)


7 Comments

Peace of Mind

by auntiesamm - 2007-03-22 11:03:12

We are a very special group of people - wired for pacing. I had a sudden onset of 3rd degree heart block, went to the ER, to ICU and then OR. One great big whammy and I had a pacemaker implanted. I am ever so grateful it happened as it did rather than while I was driving, in the bathtub, swimming, etc.. I feel much more protected than people out there running around with cardiac devices. Their heart can still stop without any warning; unless my pacer fails me I should be fine. I'm much older than you and I missed about 4 days of my usual active life, then was back to driving, shopping, and all those ADLs. Hardest thing for me and many of the others who have posted - not raising my left arm over my shoulder level for 6 weeks. I ended up putting post-it notes on all cabinets in the kitchen and bathroom so I would be reminded. Days sometimes go by and I don't even think of my pacer even when I am signed on here. On this website it is about others. Anyway, I hope my words will encourage you and that you will quickly be yourself again. Take care and God bless. Sharon

Enjoy

by pacer2005 - 2007-03-23 01:03:00

Hi, My name is Leslie. I am 49 as well, had my implant in 2005. I had issues of feeling too young as well. However, after numerous fainting spells related to my heart problem, the most dramatic one being while driving, I gave in. I didn't wreck the car, thank heaven. My surgery went uneventful, and today I forget I have it some days. The biggest negative issue for me is I chose not to do the roller coaster rides anymore. Otherwise I feel great and blessed to have a device that can remedy my problem. I think of it as my extra little friend in my chest. It reminds me it is there every now and then when I feel it "click" when paced in the ventricle. Be glad it is small and not like the hockey puck sized one years ago. Hang in there and keep smiling.

Good Luck

by hannahs - 2007-03-23 01:03:16

Just wanted to wish you all the best with everything and the adjustments you are going to have to make. I had my pacemaker fitted 4 years ago when I was 23 - went into hospital one day for what I thought was a routine checkup, was admitted there and then and next day wheeled in for the operation without ever really understanding what had happened. Took a couple of months to recover and then it was back to normal - as if nothing had ever happened. It hasn't stopped me doing anything and I even started doing even more exercise than I had done in the past - in fact things have never been better. Only discovered this website yesterday myself but seems to be a great online community. I now think that these things happen for a reason - we must use them to be strong, better people and to meet the challenges we are faced with. Good Luck with it all!

You will be fine.

by bowlrbob - 2007-03-23 02:03:07

I am older than you but in great shape. Had never been in the hospital before the PM. Mine was done on an emergency basis. I was out of town my wife and i were getting ready to go to an early dinner. 3 and 1/2 hours later I woke up in the emergency room. The next day I had the PM put in. They knew I needed one because my heart stopped for 30 seconds while I was wired up in emergency. This happened after I woke up. They knew then and called for the electrician. It has now been 17 months and I hardly think about it anymore. I had to have 1 adjustment to get it right for my condition and feel great now. My only advice if you don't feel as good as you think you should call you Dr. There are adjustments that can be made to get you in tune with your PM. They don't always get it right the first time. I waited 6 months and felt terrible the whole time. Now that it's fixed all is well. Good Luck and welcome to the CLUB. Bowlrbob

It's still new

by Suze - 2007-03-23 12:03:19

You must give yourself a little more time. I thought I would never get used to being "paced". Now, I barely even think of it. You've come to the right place. Welcome! And relax and stay positive. (I've received that advice on this forum more than once). -- -- Suze ---

Very true

by queen_beez - 2007-03-23 12:03:57

I too am considered young for a pacer. I am 43 yrs. old. I too had surgery on an emergency basis. I knew something was wrong but not until I was on vacation at my daughters house ,out of the state, did all H**l break loose.It was not a good birthday or anniversary for us. But we are much happier now that I am not falling asleep in the middle of the day. I have a little more healing but as Sharon has stated at times one posts on here not to remeber ones own illness but to help others as ones before us helped us. I don't let my pm define me just. It is almost as if I don't let my hair color define me. I am who I am. I think that it what we have all learned at this great site. We find comfort without losing our dignity. I hope one day you will find all of that to be true and extend your wisdom to the next generation of pacers. Good luck and I hope you get right back into your life very quickly, Truly, your "strange" friend, Susan

Thanks

by rosep - 2007-03-24 09:03:21

Thanks to all for comments so far - they are very reassuring! The website has been very useful re. all my questions - it does feel like a community!

You know you're wired when...

You can proudly say you’re energy efficient.

Member Quotes

Since I got my pacemaker, I don't pass out anymore! That's a blessing in itself.