my roomy is in place

Hello

My CRT-D Biotronik 3 leads was installed on Friday.

Today, on Monday, my skin is still sore, as is the muscle beneath.

I was hoping the device would be smaller, and less visible, but it is what it is.

I am happy to have found out that my strapless bra is mandatory for me. Having a large size, I feel relieve when I wear it.

After the surgery, I had a bad experience with the morphine they gave me. I had a local anestheasia. I had bad nausea and nearly fainted while getting out of bed

I am a bit frustrated that the next appointment is in 3 months only. I don't understand how my FE can be monitored without an ultrasound...

I was at 15 %, in November, and managed to go up to 27%, but that s all...

I am intolerant to the specific heart drugs (such as Entresto - horrible side effects ), And I can't really say I already feel better.

Still dizzy, still coughing quite a lot, but that could be because of the temperature during the surgery.

They said it would take less then an hour, but it took around 2,5h

Wasn't very pleasant experience, but necessary for my dilated left ventricule and the heart failure that came with.

I'm not sure how long the recovery will take, how long untill I will be able to drive etc..

Will keep you updated..

Tulp

Ps happy to have found this site


8 Comments

This web site

by Phyllis - 2021-03-02 02:49:02

I just found this web site tonight.  I wish  I had found it in 2016 when I got my pacemaker.  I didn't have anyone to talk to about it and not knowing how things are sure was scary. I can maybe help someone that is having some of my old issues.  Glad I found it. 

Thank you for the update

by Gemita - 2021-03-02 07:43:21

Tulp, thank you for the update.  I will just go through some of your points, if I may.  Firstly I am glad you have a CRT-D in place now to protect you.  That is what really matters.  I hope you will recover quickly from the trauma of the implant procedure.

A CRT-D device will always be larger than say, a dual lead device, since it has to accommodate a bigger battery for the operation of the third lead and defibrillator.  I believe as it settles in you will feel less uncomfortable and it should be less noticeable too particularly if you have any swelling around the device from the surgery.

I believe the FE refers to the EF (ejection fraction)?  Yes you will need an echocardiogram to monitor your EF but EF can take time to improve with a CRT pacemaker - maybe even up to a year - and 3 months for the first echo monitoring is therefore not at all unusual.  Do you have home monitoring, where you can send your clinic transmissions?  I expect you have, so that you can alert them should you have any concerns.  

Perhaps when you get any "dizziness" you could make a note of the date and time when it happens, so that they can check any transmissions you send to the clinic to look for any potential causes.   If you are worried about your continuing cough and other symptoms, I would go back to see your general doctor for some blood checks.

Regarding driving, your EP/Cardiologist should tell you when it is safe to resume driving.  I would phone them and ask Tulp.  

How long is Recovery?  Depends on the patient, on their health conditions.   In general the wound is usually well healed at 6 weeks, but the device area can be sore and uncomfortable for up to 3 months and beyond in many instances.  Did they not give you a leaflet on discharge to tell you what to do and what not to do with the pacemaker side arm (lifting and raising arm restrictions)?  Hopefully they did.

Good luck Tulp.  We are happy to have you here (and you too Phyllis)

thanks for the input

by Tulp - 2021-03-02 08:35:07

Dear Gemita

Thanks for you answer.

I didnt really see the doctor whoperformed the surgery untill the day before surgery. My cardiologist gave me some info, but not much.

I picked up info online where I could

I had a list of questions, but not enough time with him. No leaflet, only the monitoring was given to me.

They did not explain much, I think the thing they miss most here in French hospitals, is time..

I did mean EF, you know how the language mixes up everything between French and English. Sorry about that, not a native speaker.

As for the dizziness, I do suspect my medication... Bizoprolol has dizziness written down, and I tend to react easily to medication.

Ill just have to wait some more,, but ill ask my gP tomorrow.

Not sure Ill be able to drive there...

 

Driving restrictions

by Gemita - 2021-03-02 08:47:34

Tulp, yes please do not drive until you receive advice from your doctors.  Minimum restriction 4 weeks I believe but you need urgent guidance since restrictions are different for each device and more importantly, for your particular medical condition.  

As a precaution and to prevent leads from moving out of position, I was told to avoid raising pacemaker side arm above shoulder level for up to 6 weeks but to keep arm gently moving to avoid frozen shoulder from immobility.  I was also told to avoid lifting weights (such as heavy shopping bags) for the first 6 weeks after the procedure, but your clinic should have given you these instructions as well as wound care instructions?  I am surprised your care has been lacking.  My friends always give glowing accounts of health care in France

 

French care

by Tulp - 2021-03-02 13:56:45

The care is great in France. But I have been in between cardiologist and rythmologist. I think they both thought I had all the information I needed.

About the size, I dont think is was very honest of them to show only the small PM. Anyways, thank you Gemita for all you kind, extended and patient replies.

It is really conforting.

 

Btw, I managed to get my partner diving me to the doctor instead if me driving

Yeah !!😎

Yeah, sounds like the best solution

by Gemita - 2021-03-02 16:02:18

And I think I would get your partner to be your full time chauffeur until further notice !!  Might be safer for you and other road users.  Good luck for tomorrow and recover well 

TIme

by AgentX86 - 2021-03-02 16:37:08

Time cures all.  Your PM may not be as large as you think it is.  There is always swelling around the pocket and it lasts longer in some than others.  It can make them seem quite large.  I have a CRT-P, which is midway between the size of a normal PM and a CRT-D.  It's not small and is visible (just under the skin) but not nearly as large as it was in the first couple of months after surgery.

I keep hearing about doctors not having the time to explain what's going on and to answer questions (not limited to one medical system or country)all countries) and not answering questing.  It really surprises me since I had all the time I needed with my EP, cardiologist, and a representative from the PM manufacturer. 

I've never been rushed by any of them, or any doctor for that matter.  I sometimes see an NP or PA for some specialties and for routine appointements but never rushed.  It's all rather laid back, in fact.  The exception was the thoracic surgeon.  He had quite an assembly line going but had an army of PAs working under him who would take all the time needed.

Answering questions is critical in medicine.  There is a concept of "informed consent" that requires knowledge of any procedure.  Knowledge can't be forced but it can't be left up to Wikipedia either.

 

Very true Agentx86

by Tulp - 2021-03-03 07:36:11

You have been lucky.

In France, we have great doctors, really, but the budget cuts made these last years in public hospitals makes it difficult.

That, and the fact that some need more info then others...

I do hope  my doctor will extend my sick leave. I'm supposed to get back to work on Monday...

 

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I wouldn't be alive if it wasn't for pacemakers. I've had mine for 35+ years. I was fainting all of the time and had flat-lined also. I feel very blessed to live in this time of technology.