Still discomfort and stinging

I received my medtronic PM four months ago and have lots of discomfort and stinging daily and especially trying to sleep. My cardiologist does not seem to address any of my concerns. I know some of you have had stinging so I need advice. His nurse keeps telling me to just give it longer time with no suggestions on how to deal with it except over-the-counter pain medication which doesn't seem to help much. Any help would be appreciated. 


Pacer site discomfort

by Julros - 2021-03-31 15:26:08

I too had prolonged discomfort, along with swelling. My cardiology office referred me to my primary care provider, saying they had nothing to offer. I asked for and obtained a physical therapy referral, which worked for me. The exercises were similiar to those prescribed post-mastectomy.  I also tried CBD ointment (its legal in my state) but no help. I also switched from ice packs to applying warmth, and that helped a lot too. 

I did some research, and women typically have more chronic post op pain than men. I would be interested to see a poll on this forum about length of discomfort, rsorted out by age and gender. 

Site pain

by Theknotguy - 2021-04-01 10:27:19

Pacemaker site pain is common.  While mine wasn't as annoying as yours it did last up to two years.  

Some people report "ant bites" type of feelings as nerves heal.  I'd get sudden sharp pains that would last for about 5-10 seconds, then just go away.  

Also had a lot of pain after doing exercise.  I'd be OK that day, but the next day it would feel like someone had wrapped my pacemaker in sandpaper and scrubbed it around in the pocket.  Ouch!

Some things I did:

1) I didn't think much of it as I felt it was part of the healing process.  So I think the first way to handle it is to accept that it is common.  
2) Tylenol.  Both before and after times I thought would aggravate the pain.  (I'd also take plain aspirin.  But most heart  patients aren't supposed to take aspirin.  But I figured a little wouldn't hurt me and I was tired of being sore.)
3) Hydration.  Drank a lot of water.  Here in the US, some people resort to Pedialyte as it restores electrolytes without a lot of sugar added to the mix.  
4) Hot and cold packs.  

Like I said, my pain lasted up to two years.  Towards the end I just mostly ignored it.  Now I don't have any pain unless I do something strenuous. 

Otherwise I hope your adjustment to your pacemaker goes well.  

Post op pain.

by Selwyn - 2021-04-02 16:02:51

What a good idea that Julros has!  Why not a survey here, or I expect we can start our own survey via survey

What we want to know is,' how many people have had  pain at the site , continuing after the sutures are out or after 2 weeks'.  Male/Female/ age at time of implant/duration of pain/ severity scale 1-10, and whether the pain is/was intermittent/continuous. 

 Our club has the numbers, does it have the means?

I am open to a private message with regard to this, though look forward to seeing whether Julros's idea had legs via our club site!

We could always try to get the results published in a medical journal to inform doctors. With this, I can be of assistance.

Post op pacemaker implant pain

by Gemita - 2021-04-03 06:05:45

Yes post op pain is a problem for all of us and I note Nana Barb that we have given you advice in our earlier posts;  I presume none of which has helped you?  

Yes I also found that whilst the care in hospital during my pacemaker implant was of a high standard, the after care, especially in relation to wound healing and early pain management was less so.  Certainly pain that is not well controlled can cause a great deal of stress for many of us in the early stages, wondering whether this is how it is going to be for the rest of our lives which is why we seek out forums like this.  

I agree a survey would be a very helpful exercise Julros and even better if we could get the results published as Selwyn suggests to raise the issue more widely of the need to pay more attention to patients clearly struggling with their early, initial symptoms.

I am unable to "manage" polls/surveys here Selwyn although I do have some Admin duties.  I will forward this link onto Blake, Admin who may be able to advise us what we can do within the forum.  I would suggest that we need to keep any post on this subject firmly on the 1st page of our Messages so that members when they log in will continue to see the Survey over a long period.  Many members do not log in regularly and we may miss vital feedback if we remove any survey too quickly.

Nana Barb I know it is no consolation when you are presently suffering symptoms, but time is a great healer.  While you are waiting for mother nature to do her work, I would continue to ask your medical team for help with "uncontrolled pain" or to perhaps refer you to the pain management team at your hospital who will have a range of tools at their disposal to help you.

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