New to this

I had three episodes, over three months, of what my cardiologist labeled, "heart pauses", I blacked out. With the third episode, I decided to go to the ER. As I was already wearing a heart monitor my cardiologist officer was alerted. They called just after I arrived at the ER. They said I had a pause of 8 seconds. To me, that is a long time in heart time. My cardiologist met me in the ER and said "We need to do a PM" I said "When", he said "Now" I went straight from the ER to the OR.
I am now two weeks post-surgery. I can say that mentally I feel pretty good, knowing the blackouts have been corrected. However, I am still waiting for the "magic" to happen. No stamina, higher pulse rate, SOB, however on the SOB, I contribute most of that the COPD, but thought I would see just a little improvement. I do realize I am probably being a nervous Nelly, and need to let the body adjust. I have been writing down questions for my cardiologist on my first visit.
BTW I had a Medtronic Micra AV. leadless device embedded.


3 Comments

glad you found us!

by Tracey_E - 2020-08-29 10:26:59

Good thing you had that monitor! It can take a long time to diagnose pauses like yours, you got lucky. It's normal to be nervous! It takes time to adjust and heal.

All the pacer is going to do is make sure your heart doesn't pause or beat too slowly. If that's what was causing your symptoms, then the pacer will fix it. If it's meds or COPD or whatever, then not so much. You may feel better as you heal, you may feel better after they adjust the settings, or it may be that this is as good as it gets because a low heart rate wasn't causing your symptoms. 

Great idea writing down the questions! Took me years to figure that out. They ask if I have questions, I get instant amnesia and smile and say I'm good, then think of all my unanswered questions on the drive home. 

Be patient and you will be fine

by Gemita - 2020-08-29 13:59:19

Hello Bill,

Are you being a little nervous - probably, but not without cause.  I am so glad you have got a device securely embedded to prevent those nasty pauses and to protect you from harm in the future.  

Hopefully you will soon feel some benefit from your leadless device.  Both hubby and I have pacemakers (with leads).  Recently my husband had his lower rate raised from 60 to 70 bpm.  He also has COPD and has had physiotherapy to teach him how to breathe properly and to slow down his breathing and to breathe more deeply.  He was beginning to hyperventilate which was causing him to become even more breathless and nervous.  I have to calm him when it happens and help him to focus on his breathing and to slow it down.  Symptoms can be quite alarming from hyperventilation.  I have had to seek medical help on many occasions.

There is a lot that can be done to help you, so don’t suffer in silence.  Hopefully some adjustments can still be made to help you to feel better, but please be patient with yourself and allow time to heal and for your doctors to make any pacemaker setting changes which might be more appropriate for you.  It is a learning process at the beginning until you and your pacemaker settle down and get to know each other.  I experienced a higher pulse rate at first while my heart was healing from the implant, although after suffering for years with slow heart rates, a higher heart rate setting was bound to make me feel as though my heart was "racing".  

When you do the list of questions for your first cardiology visit, try to keep it short with only the most important questions written down.  In my experience they don’t always have a lot of time to answer all our questions during one consultation and it is far better to get a few questions “well” answered than try to go in with too many questions and come away feeling that nothing was adequately answered.  Good luck with your new device 

Update

by bill328 - 2020-09-03 16:50:12

First, thanks for those that commented. Since I wrote the first posting on 8/29 I am feeling much better. I guess I just had to wait for things to sort out. My stamina is returning and my pulse seems to have settled into what I consider my new normal.
I have learned a lot from this group, although it seems most have the chest PM and some of the problems I can't relate to. Still good to read all the comments as I am sure there are many issues that relate to both types of PM;s.

You know you're wired when...

Your old device becomes a paper weight for your desk.

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Hi, I am 47 and have had a pacemaker for 7 months and I’m doing great with it.