After PM brain function

I had a PM installed in January 2019.

Since then my cognitive abilities have become suddenly impaired, I find myself feeling not safe driving, and my mental health issues have declined into a serious depression. I am at a loss as what to do.

My doctor is sending me to a psychiatrist and put into his report that I need to be reassured. How unreassuring! I am truly frightened. 

Anyone with any experience with this? Suggestions? 




by Theknotguy - 2019-03-11 10:51:48

Depression takes on many forms and it can hit you at the most unexpected times.  A certain number of people get depression after a heart event.  I don't have the statistics for the number of people who do, but it does happen.  You've had a crisis in your life and you've come face to face with your own mortality.  Not a fun place to be.  So it isn't unusual to get hit with depression at this time.  

Having your doctor prescribe going to a psych type person indicates he's aware of your problem and is willing to help.  Maybe it's a bit of driving a tack with a sledge hammer, but he wants you to get adequate help.  I would take his suggestion as a way to help you at this difficult time.  And, since he is a heart doctor, you are in an area outside of his expertise.  Hence the psych person.  

If you look around the forum you see people with pacemakers and ICD's carrying on with "normal" lives.  So the device, in and of itself, isn't a hindrance.   It's more of a help,  So, unless there is some physical reason you haven't told us, there is no reason for you not to go back to a "normal" life.  Don't look at needing a little psych help as a negative.  A lot of people do need the help.  

After getting my pacemaker I worked with a psychologist.  It was really helpful to talk with a disinterested third party.  She wasn't a family, work, or  medical person who may have had their own agenda, just a person to help me through a difficult time.  When you go from doing everything yourself to not being able to turn over in bed without someone turning you, it's a major shock.  The world I could control ended at my fingertips and I depended upon people to do everything else.  Wondering whether or not I'd ever get back to a "normal" life was a real concern.  Took me two years to get there, but  eventually I did.  

So go work with the psych type person.  Hopefully they'll be able to help you put your finger on why you aren't feeling up to snuff.  I wish you the best.  

Aboslutely for some of us

by MartyP - 2019-03-11 12:06:13

Sparky implanted in May 2017 - Anxiety and Depression - For me it hit pretty hard. At the beginning, I napped a lot and felt just lousy. I would tell my wife my head was “fuzzy”. It was hard to feel “OK” with myself, particularly in the mornings. I went to my GP and after talking with him, we decided to start taking an anti-depressant, in my case the 50 mg Zoloft generic. I had been on it for about 3 weeks and it started to take off the lows, for me there are some side effects, some can be troublesome, but make sure you ask your doctor about what you might experience.  I’ve also started seeing a psychologist, Melvin is 82 and I love him!  I knew from past experiences they could help me through the next few weeks / months until I’m fully OK with myself. But Melvin was only one piece of the pie.  I still didn't feel right, still depressed so I sought out a psychiatrist.  Daniel was super - he upped the Zoloft to 200mg a day and over the next 6 weeks started feeling MUCH better.  I stayed on the Zoloft for about 5 months and weened off it for about 6 weeks.  I still have by Ativan pill if I have a bad day, but I AM OK. 

So lesson learned - if you are anxious and or depressed, see your psychologist and/or psychiatrist. Your body has changed, your life has changed, it will pass, but you may need some help until it does. If you need to talk with someone who has the experience and talked with others, seek out a psychologist who can help you - there is no shame, it’s usually just a chemical imbalance in your brain.

After PM brain function

by Chiwa - 2019-03-11 15:56:15

This is not normal for me.

I have lived with TachyBrady syndrome for many years. Putting in the the pace maker was not an anxiety inducing event. I actually was relieved to be having a solution, a future without my heart being weird. 

My expectations were to come out if surgery and return to my life as it was, but without having to wonder when the Bradicardia, which was getting worse and making me dizzy, would act up. 

Yes, I will be seeking psychiatric help, given no better solution. But I truly wish I understood the complete change in my brain's functions. 

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