Fun Times with Heart Disease....


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Messages 21 - 40 of total 45 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>

Big Wall climber
san jose, ca
Aug 16, 2013 - 12:06am PT
So sorry to hear this, good luck Paul. If I was a religious guy I would pray for you.

Ice climber
Aug 16, 2013 - 12:44am PT
Good luck. Just curious, is this hereditary?

Social climber
North Vancouver BC
Aug 16, 2013 - 12:45am PT
A few words of advice on statins "Some scientists believe the statins are overused. Their use has expanded into areas where they provide lesser benefit, and lesser evidence of benefit. The lower the risk of cardiovascular events, the lower the ratio is of benefits to costs. The US market for statins nearly tripled when the National Cholesterol Education Program revised its guidelines to recommend statins as primary prevention. Although the panel cited randomized trials to support statin therapy for primary prevention of occlusive cardiovascular disease, a report in Lancet notes, "not one of the studies provides such evidence." [16] Journalists have questioned the interests of the doctors who made such recommendations, as eight of the 9 doctors on the panel were discovered to have been paid by statin manufacturers]
A smaller group of scientists, The International Network of Cholesterol Skeptics, question the lipid hypothesis and argue that elevated cholesterol has not been adequately shown to cause heart disease. These organizations maintain that statins are not as beneficial or safe as suggested.[18] The beneficial effects of statins are suggested to be due to their working as vitamin D analogues.[19]" Wikipedia

I have a serious heart arrhythmia and was prescribed Lipitor, the most obvious side effects for me where compromised brain function and the ability to verbalize thoughts.
I now take 2000 mg Niacin daily and my good cholesterol HDL levels outweigh the LDL levels.

There is a definite financial incentive for drug companies to have you use high cost, low value prescription drugs.

Coupons are distributed by drug manufacturers to encourage insured consumers to choose expensive branded drugs over generics or other more affordable brands in the same therapeutic class. There is growing concern about their potential cost: Based on current trends, copay coupons will increase prescription drug costs by $32 billion over the next ten years for employers, unions and other plan sponsors.

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Aug 16, 2013 - 01:08am PT
Genetics in action, but don't despair. Our friend had a situation similar to yours - went in for routine checkup and they wouldn't let him out of the hospital. had quintuple bypass surgery the next day. got on statins immediately afterwards (like his Dad), and has been great for the past 10 years.

Because of his family history he was expecting to have to go on them "someday" but the young age and the advanced state of the blockage really took him by surprise. Take care of yourself and all the best.

Trad climber
Central Valley, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 16, 2013 - 01:20am PT
My family has the worst history....moms side: her mom and 3 Bros died from heart attack, one at 32. My mom has had 2 open heart surgeries. Dad's side: both his parents died from it and his bro had a slight one, but caught early and survived. Both my sister and I have high cholesterol and are on meds.

I knew it was just a matter of time, but not 20 years early.

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Aug 16, 2013 - 02:59am PT
Wow, that is a tough family history! Please do stay on top of it all.

Trad climber
Aug 16, 2013 - 07:49am PT

At 59, I had a stent put in my LAD last November. Doc said there was 95-99% blockage. Funny thing was I felt great when running/hiking/climbing but had chest discomfort when sitting at my desk. Had good BP and low heart rate. Cholesterol had risen in the last two years...

Two months after the stent I was hiking/caving/snorkeling in Belize. Started climbing again after another month. Took it easy for a while - only TR because I was afraid to lead while on the platelet inhibitor. I'm still taking that (until November) but started leading easier well-protected routes that I don't expect to fall on. Not pushing it yet.

Hope things work out for you. Either stent or bypass, take your meds, do the cardiac rehab if you can, take it easy for a while. You'll be fine.
Bill Mc Kirgan

Trad climber
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Aug 16, 2013 - 08:52am PT
Good luck Paul!

I'll be keeping you in my prayers for comfort and healing. I also pray for the attentiveness of the team that will be taking care of you.


Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Aug 16, 2013 - 09:04am PT
Good luck Paul.

I'm sure you'll be pulling down in no time.

Bob D'A

Trad climber
Taos, NM
Aug 16, 2013 - 09:59am PT
Paul...same for me..My dad had his first heart attack at too. My uncle and grandfather both died from them.

Science is amazing and it is a great time to be alive. The only medicine I take is a aspirin a day.

This may sound weird but after finding out what needed to be done, I kinda embraced it and it turned out pretty well for me.

Again feel free to contact me if you ever want to talk.
Alan Rubin

Aug 16, 2013 - 11:29am PT
I had a stent put in almost exactly two years ago, my situation complicated by other, apparantly unrelated, medical issues. I got back to climbing--easy top-ropes--within a few weeks, though the other issues definitely slowed down my recovery. But for the past year, especially since I got off the plavix, I've been feeling quite good for an old guy, and climbing as much as ever at my own modest grade-level. I'm still using crestor, metroprolol,fish oil, and aspirin but don't notice any side effects, and my cholesterol levels are much better than they were before my "episode" (wasn't quite a heart attack, so the doctors told me). I'm sure that you'll feel significantly better after your surgery. Best of luck to you and a speedy recovery.

Bob D'A if we both make it to the Gunks reunion (if there is indeed one) in Oct. you and I, maybe Dr. Robinson (and others) should have a "coronary veterans" team climb of some appropriate route--Coronary, maybe!!!!

Trad climber
Central Valley, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 16, 2013 - 03:59pm PT
Scheduled for an angiogram at the VA hospital in Palo Alto this coming Wednesday the 21st. (I don't have private insurance)

Trad climber
Central Valley, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 21, 2013 - 11:39pm PT
Had the angiogram today. They found multiple constructions in all 3 arteries of the heart. Doc said that they are going to do multiple stents over several visits. Ugh

Ice climber
Aug 22, 2013 - 12:15am PT
Sorry to hear that Paul. Best of luck. my grandfather, and two uncles died from heart attacks.

Aug 22, 2013 - 12:29am PT
Stable angina caused me to go to a stent man. Surprise, surprise he put in 5 stents. No difference at all. My sister-in-law was on rat poison. Her brain blew up, as did that of a neighbor. I was counseled to go on beta blocker and aspirin. Better, but don't use either. I just take care never to push.

Oh, when it gets over 100F I can still do the same amount of work once the heart gets tuned in. However, I have learned never to be more than 10 feet from a gallon of ice water. Ice water is where it's at. (non-medical opinion)

With robots they apparently don't crack the sternum. Just thinking about that is enough to cause one to blanch.

Social climber
Aug 22, 2013 - 12:40am PT
Five years to the day since my MI.

Not CAD related......but related to being a woman-of-a-certain-age .

Hope the stenting goes well....

Social climber
Aug 22, 2013 - 07:41am PT
This is pretty much my nightmare, wondering when something like this will happen to me. When I was about 5 I found out that I inherited a genetic defect from my Mother that causes high cholesterol. Heart disease killed her father in his early 40s when she was 12 or so, and it killed many of his brothers. I am 33 now and only have cholesterol in the "normal" range thanks to a very high does of Lipitor.

Your are lucky that it is something they caught before the worst happened.

A couple years ago, when she was in her early 60s, my Mother died from a STEMI (ST segment myocardial infarction), which had been misdiagnosed. She had warning signs for several weeks (unstable angina) which was misdiagnosed as muscular-skeletal issues relating to arthritis and a recent car accident. She had been to the ER several times and had been to her doctors office a few times over these few weeks. Almost unbelievable it was not properly diagnosed given her family history. On her first visit she told them she thought she was having a heart attack (she wasn't, but she was very close to having one).

After dealing with this severe pain on and off for several weeks she woke up with severe pain in her neck, back, and jaw and went by ambulance to the ER. On the day of her heart attack it was something like 4 hours in the ER before they finally diagnosed it and took her by life flight to a hospital in Portland Maine (my parents live in rural Maine). By the time she made it to the hospital it had been a long time since the event started and a lot of damage was done. They attempted to put in a stent but ended up having to do a triple bypass. She passed away the next day. Medical experts have told us that if they had properly diagnosed the heart attack that day in the ER she would have survived, and that the ER PA and supervising physician basically violated the standards of care by not ruling out a heart attack immediately given her symptoms.

While this was happening I was attending a conference in Amsterdam. I was already planning to travel home the next day but changed my flight to take the first flight of the day to Boston so I could take a bus up to Portland, which seemed to be the fastest way to get form Amsterdam to Portland. By the time I got through immigration, got my baggage, and got through customs I was very close to missing the next bus. I literally stepped out of the terminal and the bus to Portland stopped at the curb right in front of me. My mother died an hour or two after I made it to the hospital (we decided to remove life support when it was apparent that she wasn't going to recover).

I often think about the last time I saw her and how I don't want my son (now 5) to have to see me like that.

Charlie D.

Trad climber
Western Slope, Tahoe Sierra
Aug 22, 2013 - 08:37am PT
Paul, Thankfully you caught it before any damage was done by a heart attack. We get dealt gene cards and you're playing yours right. BTW my wife works in cardiac surgery ICU with access to both surgeons and cardiologists so if you have questions please send me a PM.....the very best to you.

Ice climber
Aug 22, 2013 - 10:38am PT
Beaner, that had to be hell.
Sorry to hear about your experience.
Any legal action?
Johnny K.

Aug 22, 2013 - 10:41am PT
Paul I hope the best for you to have a healthy future. Preventive check ups and regularly staying on top of everything with your Dr's is the best thing you can do,glad you caught everything very soon.
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