Checking your heart for blockages?

Checking your heart for blockages?

Author
Discussion

NDA

16,239 posts

170 months

Saturday 17th August
quotequote all
andygo said:
I went to the docs in April with wildly varying heart rate and blood pressure readings. I also had no energy and always felt tired.

Was quickly sent to the rapid access cheart clinic at MK Hospital and over the space of a few weeks had various tests. ECG, Angioplasty, X ray, and just this week a heart MRI.

I have 1 completely blocked artery and two pretty clogged up.


I haven't seen a consultant yet and my next 'thing' is on October 15th for more tests and a meeting with the consultant. I think I'm having a heart bypass, but not sure yet, depends on the viability of my heart wall fed (or not) by the blocked artery.

My life is pretty much on hold, I have no idea how at risk of a heart attack I am and I certainly am not going to physically push myself to find out!

Nobody is monitoring my cholesterol levels, BP etc. My GP is useless, and I can't get any sense out of the docs at the hospital.

I'm going to have a private consultation with a consultant to find out where I am at - the wait is literally killing me. The NHS is not very good IMHO. I'm sure it will get there if I can cling on long enough, lol.
Do you have angina pains? Do you know which arteries are clogged?

I had a bypass 3 years ago as well as 3 stents, happy to have a PM from you if you need to ask stuff....

NDA

16,239 posts

170 months

Saturday 17th August
quotequote all
throt said:
Guys,
Can arteries un clog themselves or only get worse with time.

We have someone in the family with 60% blocking on first angiogram ( is that what it is called ) but on the second check, via angiogram, they said it was all okay and clear.

Sounds iffy to me.

Tia.
Sounds very odd. Arteries don't unblock themselves.... has he/she had two angiograms then?

andygo

5,449 posts

200 months

Saturday 17th August
quotequote all
NDA said:
Do you have angina pains? Do you know which arteries are clogged?

I had a bypass 3 years ago as well as 3 stents, happy to have a PM from you if you need to ask stuff....
I have:

Left main Stem Long segment with moderate disease distally
LAD: Showed heavy calcification with total oclusion proximally with distal retrograde filling.
Left circumflex showed moderate disease with another severe disease in the mid-vessel at the bifurcation of OM and AV Circumflex
MCA: gig calibre dominant artery with mild to moderate atheroma throughout.

Apart from that I'm fine.

Googling LAD artery it was interesting to note that Wikepedia says that the LAD blockage (ALSO CALLED THE WIDOW MAKER) blah blah blah. Encouraging I thought! The problem is I have had no explanation of the real world implications of this - I haven't even had a 1 to one with the consultant yet or a run down of my various tests.

As far as symptoms go, I get a bit of jaw ache if i push on a bit, and have had a couple of chest achy moments where I start to get a bit worried. All a bit worrying really, especially given the hospitals attitude of manyana..

I'm going to be quite annoyed if I kick the bucket while they are buggering about! smile


throt

1,978 posts

115 months

Saturday 17th August
quotequote all
NDA said:
throt said:
Guys,
Can arteries un clog themselves or only get worse with time.

We have someone in the family with 60% blocking on first angiogram ( is that what it is called ) but on the second check, via angiogram, they said it was all okay and clear.

Sounds iffy to me.

Tia.
Sounds very odd. Arteries don't unblock themselves.... has he/she had two angiograms then?
She has had two.
Think it needs addressing for sure.

NDA

16,239 posts

170 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
andygo said:
I have:

Left main Stem Long segment with moderate disease distally
LAD: Showed heavy calcification with total oclusion proximally with distal retrograde filling.
Left circumflex showed moderate disease with another severe disease in the mid-vessel at the bifurcation of OM and AV Circumflex
MCA: gig calibre dominant artery with mild to moderate atheroma throughout.

Apart from that I'm fine.

Googling LAD artery it was interesting to note that Wikepedia says that the LAD blockage (ALSO CALLED THE WIDOW MAKER) blah blah blah. Encouraging I thought! The problem is I have had no explanation of the real world implications of this - I haven't even had a 1 to one with the consultant yet or a run down of my various tests.

As far as symptoms go, I get a bit of jaw ache if i push on a bit, and have had a couple of chest achy moments where I start to get a bit worried. All a bit worrying really, especially given the hospitals attitude of manyana..

I'm going to be quite annoyed if I kick the bucket while they are buggering about! smile
I had my LAD bypassed as it was in a similar condition - obviously it depends where the blockage is that determines whether you need a bypass.

I would be tempted to go and see your cardiologist privately, it's not that expensive to do and get him to review your results and talk to you about what options you have.

Have you been given any medication - the 'spray' for example? Have they talked about stents?

I'd suggest not pushing yourself physically until you have been reassured.

The Mad Monk

5,369 posts

62 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
Frimley111R said:
off to see the doc at 4.30. Have some minor chest pains which may be nothing but she's going to check me over just in case.

EDIT: Checked me over but said doubtful it's anything heart related but booked me in for an ECG next week as a precaution. Went home and did a fairly quick 5K. Good to have doc's opinion for a bit of peace of mind. Had to lie to Mrs 111R about why I was going so she didn't worry

Edited by Frimley111R on Friday 9th August 10:47
A 5k in isolation won't make any difference to anything. A get fit, keep fit programme will, long term, do you good. Regular exercise is the key.

When you go to see your doctor, or other medical specialist and they propose doing xyz, ask what is this for? What will it do? Why? I have a history of heart problems, starting with a heart attack, followed up with triple by-pass surgery later the same year - 1990.

Quite seriously take a notebook and pen with you when you go to see these people. They will be only too pleased to explain to you what they are doing. Write down words, you don't know and Google them when you get home. I hope this doesn't sound condescending, because it isn't meant to be.

I really think your wife should be consulted and involved.

andygo

5,449 posts

200 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
NDA said:
I had my LAD bypassed as it was in a similar condition - obviously it depends where the blockage is that determines whether you need a bypass.

I would be tempted to go and see your cardiologist privately, it's not that expensive to do and get him to review your results and talk to you about what options you have.

Have you been given any medication - the 'spray' for example? Have they talked about stents?

I'd suggest not pushing yourself physically until you have been reassured.
I have had the spray issued to me as well as beta blockers and astorvastin to reduce my cholesterol level. The heart MRI scan I had done was to check the viability of the heart tissue fed by the LAD artery. If the heart wall is damaged, apparently no point in replumbing it. Not sure where that would leave me - info is very thin on the ground from the invisible doctors. Its terrible service really.

As I pointed out to the consultants secretary, if I took my car into the garage and they identified a serious engine issue and said we will have a listen in a couple of months you would be very cross - surely this is a bit more important and time critical. I can always park up a car, but I cant be put into suspended animation!

Yeah, whatever, seemed to be the attitude, nothing we can do.

NDA

16,239 posts

170 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
andygo said:
The heart MRI scan I had done was to check the viability of the heart tissue fed by the LAD artery. If the heart wall is damaged, apparently no point in replumbing it.
Really?

That sounds very odd advice to me..... but I'm a bloke on the interweb and not a heart surgeon. Although I've had enough heart procedures to be vaguely aware of the issues.

Get yourself an appointment with a cardiologist, it will probably cost £200.... ask him all the questions.

andygo

5,449 posts

200 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
NDA said:
Really?

That sounds very odd advice to me..... but I'm a bloke on the interweb and not a heart surgeon. Although I've had enough heart procedures to be vaguely aware of the issues.

Get yourself an appointment with a cardiologist, it will probably cost £200.... ask him all the questions.
Well that's what I was told by someone who's probably not qualified to comment - the Consultants secretary. It really is more than a little shocking TBH. I like to think of myself as reasonably on the ball, but if the way I feel like I have been treated (no pun intended) is standard, than I shudder to think how the rest of the NHS customers feel with the cumulative worry they must have!

NDA

16,239 posts

170 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
If you were anywhere near Surrey, I would recommend my cardiologist- he's very good.

Badda

1,471 posts

27 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
NDA said:
andygo said:
The heart MRI scan I had done was to check the viability of the heart tissue fed by the LAD artery. If the heart wall is damaged, apparently no point in replumbing it.
Really?

That sounds very odd advice to me..... but I'm a bloke on the interweb and not a heart surgeon. Although I've had enough heart procedures to be vaguely aware of the issues.

Get yourself an appointment with a cardiologist, it will probably cost £200.... ask him all the questions.
It makes sense - if the wall is damaged, or in other words infarcted, then there's little point providing it with a blood supply it's not going to / cannot use.

Poppiecock

790 posts

3 months

Sunday 18th August
quotequote all
Badda said:
NDA said:
andygo said:
The heart MRI scan I had done was to check the viability of the heart tissue fed by the LAD artery. If the heart wall is damaged, apparently no point in replumbing it.
Really?

That sounds very odd advice to me..... but I'm a bloke on the interweb and not a heart surgeon. Although I've had enough heart procedures to be vaguely aware of the issues.

Get yourself an appointment with a cardiologist, it will probably cost £200.... ask him all the questions.
It makes sense - if the wall is damaged, or in other words infarcted, then there's little point providing it with a blood supply it's not going to / cannot use.
Can't see how that could apply to the LAD - that's pretty much the main feed for the heart, isn't it?

(Mine was almost totally blocked and I spent 48 hours in critical care when I had my MI)

carinatauk

1,046 posts

197 months

Monday 19th August
quotequote all
Well it's my turn for all this excitement.

5 years I was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy [left ventricle] and Atrial Fibrillation. MRI showed some clogging of the coronary arteries but "nothing" to worry about.

Started feeling a tad unwell some months ago and was referred to another cardiologist.

Full check over, no issues to worry about. Sent for an Ultrasound, came back as before with some pumping issues with dilated atrium due to AF, apparently to be expected?. Next was a CT Angiogram [2 months waiting], results were less promising with severely narrowed coronary arteries; referred for proper angiogram [6 weeks wating]

Two weeks ago became light headed, chest pains etc etc, went to doctor who gave me GTN and bking for not calling out an ambulance. Dr contacted the cardiologist and had words about not sorting things out. Next working day I had a call and I am in for an Angiogram on Thursday.

Will be glad when this is over with; just a shame I can't get rid of the medicine.

andygo

5,449 posts

200 months

Monday 19th August
quotequote all
carinatauk said:
Well it's my turn for all this excitement.

5 years I was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy [left ventricle] and Atrial Fibrillation. MRI showed some clogging of the coronary arteries but "nothing" to worry about.

Started feeling a tad unwell some months ago and was referred to another cardiologist.

Full check over, no issues to worry about. Sent for an Ultrasound, came back as before with some pumping issues with dilated atrium due to AF, apparently to be expected?. Next was a CT Angiogram [2 months waiting], results were less promising with severely narrowed coronary arteries; referred for proper angiogram [6 weeks wating]

Two weeks ago became light headed, chest pains etc etc, went to doctor who gave me GTN and bking for not calling out an ambulance. Dr contacted the cardiologist and had words about not sorting things out. Next working day I had a call and I am in for an Angiogram on Thursday.

Will be glad when this is over with; just a shame I can't get rid of the medicine.
Don't worry about an angiogram, piece of cake.

carinatauk

1,046 posts

197 months

Monday 19th August
quotequote all
Thanks

"Luckily" I have had one before so quite looking forward to seeing the video.

Went for the Pre Angio Assessment this morning. All seemed Ok, ECG shows some issues, BP 175 / 92 BPM 72.

Weird setup though, apparently they won't put stents in etc during the angiogram, politics dictate that I have to go to Papworth???

andygo

5,449 posts

200 months

Monday 19th August
quotequote all
carinatauk said:
Thanks

"Luckily" I have had one before so quite looking forward to seeing the video.

Went for the Pre Angio Assessment this morning. All seemed Ok, ECG shows some issues, BP 175 / 92 BPM 72.

Weird setup though, apparently they won't put stents in etc during the angiogram, politics dictate that I have to go to Papworth???
There seems to be a lot of politics about getting yourself fixed with the NHS.

Blood pressure is a tiny bit higher than mine, my heart rate is around 55 -60. They put me on twice daily beta blockers bringing my heart rate down to 37 which I thought was a bit low, so I ust take 1 per day now.

It's almost self medication as nobody has bothered to ask how I feel, hows my BP etc in the last 2 months. If it wasn't for me turning up mfor the MRI scan last week they wouldn't know if I had popped my clogs or not! And even if I had, I'm just another number to the system, which is a shame, as I'm pretty far up the pecking order in our house and so quite important that I am kept alive..

Poppiecock

790 posts

3 months

Monday 19th August
quotequote all
carinatauk said:
Thanks

"Luckily" I have had one before so quite looking forward to seeing the video.

Went for the Pre Angio Assessment this morning. All seemed Ok, ECG shows some issues, BP 175 / 92 BPM 72.

Weird setup though, apparently they won't put stents in etc during the angiogram, politics dictate that I have to go to Papworth???
I can't remember much about the first angioplasty I had, as I was maxed out on morphine.

I watched the full show on multiple widescreen monitors for the 2nd precautionary op.

Frimley111R

Original Poster:

9,973 posts

179 months

Wednesday 21st August
quotequote all
The Mad Monk said:
A 5k in isolation won't make any difference to anything. A get fit, keep fit programme will, long term, do you good. Regular exercise is the key.

When you go to see your doctor, or other medical specialist and they propose doing xyz, ask what is this for? What will it do? Why? I have a history of heart problems, starting with a heart attack, followed up with triple by-pass surgery later the same year - 1990.

Quite seriously take a notebook and pen with you when you go to see these people. They will be only too pleased to explain to you what they are doing. Write down words, you don't know and Google them when you get home. I hope this doesn't sound condescending, because it isn't meant to be.

I really think your wife should be consulted and involved.
She gets consulted on all my medical stuff anyway (2 head operations in the last year plus countless checks and tests). I do the 5k at least once a week and about 1.5hr on my bike. The 5k wasn't a one off. I do try to do 2 fitness things a week on average.

No history of any issues in my family and i eat reasonably well and am not overweight/don't smoke.

The Mad Monk

5,369 posts

62 months

Wednesday 21st August
quotequote all
Frimley111R said:
She gets consulted on all my medical stuff anyway (2 head operations in the last year plus countless checks and tests). I do the 5k at least once a week and about 1.5hr on my bike. The 5k wasn't a one off. I do try to do 2 fitness things a week on average.

No history of any issues in my family and i eat reasonably well and am not overweight/don't smoke.
Well, you did say:-

"Had to lie to Mrs 111R about why I was going so she didn't worry".

Skyedriver

8,547 posts

227 months

Wednesday 21st August
quotequote all
andygo said:
piece of cake.
Not sure that's the best treatment to be honest, all that sugar.

On a serious note, hope all you people with heart troubles get sorted, one day I'll go and see the Doc about a full checkup, used to go to a "Well Mans Clinic" where I used to live. As I said earlier, they didn't check me over after strenuous exercise just at tick over.
At the minute, back ache and knee pain seem to be taking No 1 spot in my troubles.