I would like to talk to some of the 'younger' pacemaker people - especially if you have congenital heart problems. I've been having some annoying issues.
I am a 38 year old male. I was born with a 3rd degree heart block, discovered when I was 14 - thus I was bradycardic.
My cardiologists waited until I was 28 to implant my pacer. I never had any identifyable symptoms prior to this. It was put in , as an 'insurance policy'.
Three years ago, it was noted on my echo that my ejection fraction was a little low (45-50%). I am not sure if this is new, or old. Until I started a family about 8 years ago, I sadly paid little attention to keeping up with my health.
Recently, during an illness I became a little short of breath, but my vitals looked good - standard oxygen saturation, standard pulse, clear ekg, clear chest xray. I also tested positive for both FLU-A and Strep, so it wasn't out of line.
I recovered from that, but then began getting dizzy spells. Only slightly dizzy, and again, I took vitals at home and things looked fine, 100% of the time. I went in, and they said my eardrums looked swollen, and it appeared I had severe allergies or a sinus infection. The prescribed flonase seemed to help - but not totally.
Since then, I get brief bouts of tiny, tiny bits of what might be shortness of breath, and still very occasional dizzy periods.
I have a cardiology appointment in two weeks, but I wanted to see if I was being insane, as I recently feel like having the pacemaker makes me a huge hypochondriac with any symptom - especially since I've never really had anything like this before.
I am healthy now, I don't drink, I don't smoke, I don't do any illicit drugs - and I'm a recent grad RN. But before I got married at age 31, I didn't take care of myself. I drank fairly heavily from age 24 to age probably 33, and smoked from age 19 to like age 28-29 (and then vaped from age 33 to age 36).
I run on an elliptical 20 min a day, and try and lift moderately 3 times a week.
Today, I did that workout, and during the workout I felt great. But afterwards, I felt a little poor and had an elevated pulse of 110-120 for an hour or so after before it calmed down.
I feel like I nitpick my vitals and freak out about my condition too much, or too little. Even as a new RN, I feel like I don't have any real specialized knowledge, and I don't feel very chill about my condition recently.
Anyone have some experiences they want to share? I feel like as the 'young guy' with the pacer, that the cardiologists have often paid me little mind, as they deal with patients who are much worse off. But I am now highly motivated to live at least another 20 years, so I can be there for my kids (ages 2 and 6).
Thanks for any input or stories.
You know you're wired when...
Muggers want your ICD, not your wallet.
Your anxiety is normal. It takes some of us a little time to adjust to the new friend. As much as they love you, family and friends without a device just cannot understand the adjustment we go through. That is why this site is so valuable.