My husband visited a cardiologist and presented the following history and symptoms: mild heart attack 17 years ago; stint implant 15 years ago; on high blood pressure meds; waking at night with difficulty breathing and has to sit up; difficulty breathing when walking short distance; oxygen level in doctors office was 80. Should he have been hospitalized? Dori
Hospitalization would depend on whether he has water retention. Then, he would need to be in the hospital to get the excessive water off. Sometimes water pills do not work and the person needs IV Lasix. If he has difficulty breathing at night, he needs to be more upright when sleeping. When he gets up, he needs to sit on the edge of the bed for awhile for the blood pressure to adjust before standing. He may need to take the water pills before actually getting on his feet in the morning. Have the pills and a glass of water by the bed for him to take. What happens is at night the fluid backs up into the lungs and the person feels the worst in the morning. It is important to keep the water off. Make sure that he weighs himself daily and if he starts gaining a pound, call his doctor to report this. His doctor can then adjust the dosage of the water pill or add 1/2 or 1 tablet more. Ask his doctor if he needs to have oxygen at home. Has he had testing lately such as EKG, echocardiogram? It would be good to know if these symptoms are the cause of blocked arteries or valve problem or heart failure. I hope he starts feeling better. I went through this with my mom and it is hard to see someone having such difficulties. Sometimes she was fine and other times she could not get any air. She had congestive heart failure with valve problems and blocked arteries. Make sure that you are taking care of yourself also. It takes a toll on the caregiver.
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