I am looking for advice about my sick father, and help with understanding what the future holds. 4 weeks ago he had a big heart attack, left ventricular failure, with subsequent pulmonary oedema, with added renal complications. He was immediately given 2 stents for the artery blockages, put on all the appropriate medications, oxygen, etc, and monitored closely. A balloon pump was introduced after about a week, for 4 days, which made him temporarily feel better. Then his kidneys started to have problems with the diuretics, so they keep withdrawing them them introducing them again when the oedema get too bad. Basically, we have been going around in circles. Last weekend, they decided he needed dialysis, so moved him to ICU, and ventilated him as he was quite agitated at night etc. So he is now in an induced coma. His ejection fraction is 25%. Until this happened he was a fit, healthy man with no health issues and was on no meds.
I would like straight answers, is he likely to recover from this, and how will he be if he does?
I can't speak for your father's future, but six years ago I was hospitalized with a MI, and renal failure, and bleeding ulcer, with 50% blood volume lost.
When all was said and done, I had stage 4 heart failure, with EF of 15%, and total renal failure. I was put on Coreg, and lasix for the heart failure, and dialysis 6 days a week for the renal failure. Prilosec twice a day for the bleeding ulcer, and then it was, more or less, left up to me to make it all work for me.
Today, my EF is 40%, and I still do home hemodialysis 6 days a week. In between dialysis treatments and doctor visits, I fish, hike, hunt, and just about anything else I want to do, and I feel good most of the time.
Most of your father's future is up to him. He'll have to follow a strict cardiac diet(no salt, no fat, etc), and lose any extra weight he is carrying, along with not smoking or drinking alcohol. He'll also need to work on getting all of the excercise he can comfortably manage, which means to take short walks, until he can't carry on a normal conversation, at that point he'll need to stop and rest for at least 45 min.or longer, and then try again. It's frustrating at first, but after several weeks, he'll find himself able to do more and more.
The doctors can give him the meds he needs, and a dietician can give him the information he needs to put together his own diet of likes, and the excercise can be almost anything he enjoys doing, once he can walk for about an hour without losing his breath, or feeling real tired. The bottom line is, HE will be the one who will have to do everything to bring himself back from the MI.
I hope this helps....and I hope the best for your Father.
Thanks so much for your reply Chris, it really helps to hear other peoples success stories, and its amazing that you still live life to the full. It really gives me hope that my father can also have a good quality of life once recovered. He is a stubborn man, so i think it will go one way or the other, he will either give up or he will be like you, and do absolutely everything thats necessary. Hopefully it will be the latter.
I couldn't agree more with gmachris518, that was very well said.
Much, if not most of your fathers future recovery will be up to him and his acceptance of his limitations and his cardiologists instructions. It may take some time to determine the correct combination of meds and dosages so he should expect some adjustments, He needs to be patient, everyone responds to treatment differently, there is no one size fits all. Depression often follows a HA so try to encourage him to have a positive attitude, it helps.
I was diagnosed with CHF at 62 with an EF of 18%. By strictly adhereing to my Dr's instructions, a proper diet, and exercise it improved (much to my Dr's astonishment) in a couple of years to 45% and has remained pretty constant since. It did take time to get the right combination of drugs and we still make adjustments from time to time. I'm now 74 and like gmachris518, I do pretty much everything I wish. I golf, garden travel, life is still good.
Best wishes to you and your father, let him know that there others who have "been there, done that"
Thanks so much for the replies, it really helps to keep my spirits up.
Currently he is still in ICU, on a ventilator at night, on dialysis and on total parenteral nutrition as his intestines are not absorbing enough nutrients. He was on antibiotics for an infection but that has cleared up now. His heart is still being massively supported by meds, including dobutamine. Noone is prepared to give me any idea of how long he will be in this condition, or prognosis.
As everyone has said above me....how well he does will be based on his determination. My daughter did not have a massive heart attack but had a heart transplant 12 years ago when she was 22. Last year she had to have 2 stents put in right where the right and left coronary arteries join. She was suppose to have that done and go home the next day; instead she ended up in the ICU in an induced coma for four days, on the respirator and heart pump (balloon). We didn't think she was going to make it. She did; she is in chronic heart failure, has been for several years with this 'new heart' and even though they are considering retransplanting her, she still keeps going on with her life. Things may seem overwhelming at the moment; it doesn't mean that it will continue that way so try to focus on your father's strengths and use that to help him get through this tough time. Take care
iam 23 years old with C.H.F ive had it since I was 18 I do pretty good i sit down after a half hour and rest since i lost weght my blood presser has been running 90-75 at a 100 pounds stay on a low salt diet .stay away form fast food take the mid they give u and where a mid ID os people are alert u have C.H.F os they don't give u wrong mids rest and walk my lelf side of the heart output is 40% i do well for some ome with C.H.F good luck this is very scarery i know don't give up hopes god bless
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