I've had multiple stents placed in both my LAD and RCA, and have had three heart attacks, and have fought agressive Cardiac Artery Disease. It appears I'm winning that battle, I've lost a great deal of weight (my BMI is now 24.5) and my cholesterol level is perfect according to my doctor, and I'm no longer injecting or taking meds for diabetes. I exercise daily. However, I have had angina pains when exercising, and control the pain with nitro as well as simply backing off the exercise level. A recent trip to a very humid and hot climate outside the country put me in the hospital for tests, and it was determined that my angina is not caused by blockages but by my weakened heart muscle, it simply doesn't get the oxygen it needs. My doctor put me on the drug Ranexa. I was less than enthusiastic, I'm taking Coreg, Imdur, HCTZ, a statin, fish oil, and Plavix already. I didn't fill the prescription, but my wife did and tricked me to the pharmacy where I had to get it (she's got my number). The doc told me that this drug had trouble getting approved because it can screw up QTc interval but felt it was worth the risk as my symptoms of Angina were pretty severe. I already have a big ST depression, so I was nervous.
I'm shocked how much better I feel. My exercise capacity has increased, I have no angina symptoms at all, and for the first time in several years I'm not constantly out of breath when mowing the yard, working out at the gym, etc. I've been on the drug for a month and I swear I'm feeling better day by day. I've had a few side effects but one expects that, and nothing severe, the bottom line is I'm feeling better than I've felt for several years.
Has anyone else had experience with Ranexa?
This is good news. I am in a somewhat similar position with CABG, several stents and still afflicted with angina. I am also on Coreg, statin, DiovanHZT, fishoil and plavix. I was given a sample of Ranexa but also was scared taking it after some nausea and palps side effects (and almost dumped it). Do you ever take Nitro for the angina? This is the only relief for me so far. But then you indicate that you do not have coronary blockages yet angina?? I am also Dx with Diastolic dysfunction which is incomplete relaxation and filling of the LV caused by stiffening of the heart muscle in turn due to BP and blockages. I still have the samples and may be willing to retry it. How much is your dosage and what are your side effects if you don't mind my asking?
My angina symptoms come when I stress my body, either physically or emotionally, and I can control it by slowing or calming down. For example, I'll start getting pressure on a long set of stairs on a hot day, and I usually can stop it by slowing down or stopping. I only use my nitrolingua (liquid nitro spray) if it won't stop. Imdur is slow-release nitro, and it helps a great deal. Ranexa is meant to be taken with drugs like Coreg and Imdur. I take 500mg twice a day. As I mentioned, I can't hardly believe how my exercise ability has increased since taking it, I'm not as breathless and literally no angina.
The only things that could be a side effect that I have noticed is some sleeplessness, and for some reason my hands tend to feel asleep when I grip something like an exercise machine for a long time. However, the economic condition of this country and the stock market dives could definitely be a cause of sleeplessness! How much better I feel trumps any side effect I have noticed.
My angina comes from simply a beat up heart with several areas of dead muscle from MI's.
Best wishes, and if you decide to try it, I'd be interested in your opinion of this new drug.
I forgot to include in my reply that I have what the docs call small artery disease. Several small branches of my LAD are 60 - 80% blocked and will close, they are too small to stent, aren't dangerous by themselves but collectively cause trouble when they occlude and it's important I keep my heart as healthy as possible, grow collateral arteries and exercise.
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