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CHF and abdominal swelling
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CHF and abdominal swelling

my husband is 60 yrs old.  He got a mechanical valve in March 2006.  Struggles with his getting his PT/INR in the right range.   Recent problem is the abdominal swelling.  He has gained quite a bit of weight just in a few months, which is very abnormal for him.   He is in pain and has difficulty doing even the easiest task.    He is huffing and puffing all the time.   He went to Veterans Hosp yesterday.   They say nothing is wrong.   The scheduled a colonoscopy for June 3rd ... 3 months from now !!!      I know he needs to go to the hospital.    I told  him that doing nothing is not going to help his situation.    It will not get better by itself.    Any suggestions ?

Thank you !
Cathy
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The abdominal swelling is a common occurence with CHF patients.

Does your husband take any diuretics?  Lasix works real well for helping the body to move the excess fluid from the body.  

From what you wrote, it sounds as though your husband's lungs might be harboring excess fluid as well.

My husband also goes to the Veteran's for medical, and I'm not impressed with their services.  They do as little as possible no matter what the problem is.  

My husband and I, both have irregular heartbeats.  I now have a pacemaker/defib, and my husband has nothing, because I have health insurance, and my husband does not.

If at all possible, take your husband to a private practice doctor.  I think you will see things get done for him.

I hope this helps.
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Do not let them tell you there is nothing wrong with your husband. Your husband is most likely suffering from pleural edema or pleurisy. I had the same problem, my stomach looked like I was pregnant, i was retaining 60 lbs of water. I could not breathe, I could not bend over and I could not sleep unless I was sitting up. The doctors told me many times that there was nothing wrong with me. They were too lazy to do a damn chest x-ray. Make sure they do a chest X ray. A colonoscopy costs a hell of a lot more than a chest X-ay, they are trying to chisel you with an expensive test. this will not get better unless you do something and get to a real doctor, the VA is notorious for being a terrible system. This can and eventually kill your husband if he is not treated. It might sound like I am being dramatic but this is really serious, it nearly killed me. Please go to a different doctor. I know it is expensive but your husbands life is worth it. If you have any further questions for me I administer a facebook page called Congestive Heart Failure network. You can get answers to any question you have there. Please take your husband to a new doctor
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Thanks for the comments.  He has been on Lasix before.  I was reading on line that when the swelling is that bad, the pills don't get absorbed, so you actually need IV treatment to remove the fluid.   I also am not satisfied with VA.   I was at his appt in mid Feb and he had the swelling at that time.  I asked his dr several times, "so-you're not concerned with his weight and his abdomen area? !"    No - she attributed it to him being off work since Sept and being inactive.    He has not been working since Sept and we have applied to disability, but I know my husband (of 26 years),,,this is NOT normal for him.   I am off work today and will insist that he go to another hospital today.   We have an 8 year old daughter  (I am 50, my husband is 60)   so he has to consider her too.     Yes- he looks like he is pregnant.    The area is hard, its not soft like if it was just fat.    You know when something is wrong with your body.     I was not at the appt this week when they gave him the June colonoscopy appt  ,    I would have said "are you serious ?, 3 months from now ?"    Also, I don't think a colonoscopy is what he needs.    I will post again later today or this weekend.   Thanks for the support
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Today, Friday, March 4th, my husband went to Bethesda Hospital here in Cincinnati Ohio.     He went there around noon.     He called a half  hour ago at 5 pm.     They gave him morphine, said they found nothing wrong and told him to follow up with the VA.     I am now having my sister pick me up so we can drive to pick  him up......How frustrating !!!    They gave him morphine...and that's it ?!   On the phone he still sounded terrible.     What are they not seeing ?    I chose to stay home with our daughter.    Maybe I needed to go with him and raise some H*&% !!      I don't know what else to do.   He also has a doctor appt on March 23rd for his disability.    That is in Columbus Ohio.    They'll probably say nothing is wrong.    Any suggestions ??    I just needed to post the update.   Thanks
Cathy
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Avatar_f_tn
The VA ought to be ashamed of how they take care of our Vets...it makes me so angry!

Your husband sound like a classic case of CHF.  CHF can kill if it's not properly treated.  I would't stop with one doctor.  I would keep going to doctors until they find something.

I know it's expensive, but somethign has to be done.
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