Still new to this. All advice still welcomed... But, I feel much better and stronger.

I'm coming up on my two week mark after having my ICD implanted. My strength level has returned oh, the pain has subsided substantially, and I can no longer feel my heart beating when I used to feel my PVCs all day all night and everywhere in between. Evidently the medication they put me on which is Lisinopril with hydrochlorothiazide and a beta blocker the starts with the letter C and I still can't pronounce, is doing its job in conjunction with my new low salt diet, exercise, and my new positive and proactive attitude. I do have one question for anybody that may know the answer. Can anybody tell me when it's safe to be able to lift my arm above my shoulder without fear of pulling the leads loose . Quite honestly I can't wait to be able to reach above my head and just stretch my muscles and have my full range of rotation back. There's really no pain to speak of but I don't want to cause any damage and have to have repair surgery done. Any help would be greatly appreciated guys. Thank you.


3 Comments

6 weeks

by RedRocksGirl - 2019-05-20 22:37:06

I was told 6 weeks before I should raise my arm above my shoulder, they want to make sure the leads have time to scar into the heart. I had my first ICD put in this past January (then the suture broke and it was floating around in the left chest area - but that's another story) and then had a pocket revision where they had to anchor the device back in.  The leads were not a concern with the second surgery since it was just the device moving around. That being said, I'm 6 weeks out from the second surgery, did NOT have a 6 week restriction the second time since the leads were past the first surgery 6 week restriction. I still do not have my full range of motion back so have been going to a massage therapist who does pre and post operative therapeutic massage.  He's done focused work on the left chest pectoral muscles and my left shoulder joint muscles and its made a BIG difference on the range of motion there. Still not all the way there yet but has really lessened the tightness and helped me relax those areas from the guarding I've been consciously and subconsciuosly doing.

Pay attention to your body

by Gotrhythm - 2019-05-21 15:50:00

My doctor had me raising my arm, doing shoulder exercises starting the third or forth day. By the tenth day, I was raising my arm overhead. The essense of the exercise is to gradually work up to it, just a couple of inches more every day, and to perform the movement slowly and smoothly.

The leads are screwed into the heart muscle and are put in with enough slack to allow for movement. Leads do come loose, but it's really pretty rare and probably not the result of exercise.

I would never tell you not to follow your doctor's orders, but I also think it's important to listen to your own body.

If your arm wants to move, I say, move it, but be sensible. Just work up to putting your arm overhead slowly and gradually over a week's time, reaching just a little higher every day, remembering to make slow, gentle movements. No jerking and no weights. The longer it's been since the surgery, the less likely you are to do any damage.---Just my opinion.

New to this... All advice welcomed.

by IamBonzwa - 2019-05-21 16:23:48

Hey y'all. Thank you very much for the feedback. Red Rocks Girl, I hope you get your range of motion back, strike that... I know you will get your range of motion back soon. Got rhythm has some good advice that I agree with about, well essentially baby steps. Anyway, thanks for the good word you two.

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