Recovered?

I know some of you have had complications but I seem to have been one of the lucky individuals for whom the surgery and recovery went smoothly. I'm 3 months and 6 days post implant and this morning over coffee I noted that I was completely physically unaware of the PM, surgery site or anything out of the ordinary. The incision is completely healed with very minimal scaring - really just a line about two inches long. No discomfort from the PM pocket. No awareness of pacing. I have full mobility of my arms and reasonable ability to exercise (I need to get back into shape over the next few months). On the positive side - I no longer have dizzy spells (from long pauses) and my blood pressure seems to stabilize after standing (like getting out of bed) much quicker than before. Now I'm still working on finding the right blood pressure meds - lisinopril caused a nagging cough and beta blockers had their normal living in a fog impact. I spoke with my EP this morning on the phone and we're trying a different drug combo starting tomorrow. I would recommend minimizing the number of different caregivers - if you can. My sole cardiologist is now my EP, he did the PM surgery, does all PM interrogations and adjustments and treats me with respect - we make medical decisions jointly after a discussion of pros/cons and alternatives.

It is important to present and discuss issues/problems on this forum. However, I think it is also important to describe positive outcomes and experiences so that those with problems know different results are possible and to also let those with recent or pending implants know that for at least some of us - the surgery and living with the devices are not that bad.


5 Comments

Me too

by bowlrbob - 2008-03-11 07:03:35

My recovery was almost the same. Except for one episode about 9 months after implant. Then my EP which is my heart Dr. made the adjustment that worked. I too had problems with the high blood pressure meds. but that was resolved by cutting down my atenolol 50's to 25's now now spaciness and no problems. Bowlrbob

Great news

by admin - 2008-03-11 08:03:44

Winesap,

Great to hear your recovery went well. This is the case for the majority of recipients. Many of the people who experience a complication go online to forums like Pacemaker Club looking for answers and support.

I've lived with a pacemaker since 1978 and have not had any major complications. My scars are not as nice as yours, but it beats the alternative (i.e. not living an active life thanks to my device).

Blake

Yes!

by BettyB - 2008-03-11 09:03:19

I think it's important for people to know that so many of pacers have done quite well. I, too, healed well with very little scarring, and have felt very good since the initial period of healing. My PC is forgotten a good deal of the time, and I'm thankful for it.

Betty

I agree

by mandogrl - 2008-03-12 01:03:03

First, I couldn't take ace inhibitors or beta blockers, but do really well on Cozaar, an ace blocker. (like an ace inhibitor, without the coughing), told my co-worker about it and she's doing well on it also.
I agree, there's a lot to be grateful for. I've had 3 shots in the last 2 years, and even (gasp!) gave my kitty a shot, and didn't faint. Many of you might understand the significance of that!
Altho the 1st 6 - 12wks was a little more intense than I expected, I'm very glad I did get my PM.
I also say, thank God for the support and information I've received at the PM club. My doc will never know how many dumb questions he was spared! And besides, many of them really needed to be answered by those with personal experience.

Agreed!

by TKS - 2008-03-12 12:03:54

I too was one of the lucky ones who had an uneventful recovery physically. My scar is not bad (hardly noticeable with all the other scars on my chest!) and I don't feel any pacing. Probably the worst part for me now has been some minimal discomfort due to the fact that the area where they implanted the PM (left side, just under collar bone) is an area where I do not have much fatty tissue. So it does tend to pull some but is more of a nusiance than anything. (If they had implanted it in most fatty part of my body, my rear end, I would have no complaints! :-D ) I'm doing well with the meds I'm on and living a pretty active life now, which sure is better than what I was living before...which was a life of exhaustion.
The worst part of my recovery was mentally. I was very depressed after implant and actually got counseling. It was the best thing I could have done. My therapist made me realize that instead of asking"why me" I needed to be saying, "Thank God for technology!" Once I got past that recovery went rather fast.

Sorry I got long winded but just wanted to share!

Theresa

You know you're wired when...

You have a maintenance schedule just like your car.

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Pacemakers are very reliable devices.