My mother has recently has a heart valve replacement and although she has recovered well from the surgery, she has a problem with eating. Everything tastes and smells as if it is rotting and therefore she has eaten very little since the surgery. She is 74 years old and has lost 20 pounds so far.
Has anyone else experienced this, and does anyone have any ideas for a remedy? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
More research is being done into this, it isn't uncommon for the sense of taste to be altered after major surgery. It appears that the sense of taste can be very heightened after surgery making many foods intolerable. Lots of patients lose their liking for foods which were their favourite before surgery. Red meat can taste like it lost it's sell by date months ago. After my bypass surgery I found salt and sugar to be enhanced in taste. All cooking had to be done with no added salt or I couldn't consume it. I had a very sweet tooth before surgery, but sugar was just too sweet for a few months after. It all seemed to settle down after a few months with me. Try to establish which tastes have been heightened to extremes, and try to avoid those. I found dairy products such as cheese and eggs to be easily tolerated, chicken too. Fish tasted very salty and had a strong smell/taste of the ocean. No matter how long the fish was cooked, it always tasted raw to me. I even tried to suck a few mints before eating but it didn't hide anything. Have you tried fruit yoghurts? I found them great and savoury biscuits. In many cases it does settle down again. How long ago was the surgery?
I had heart valve surgery about 7 weeks ago, and my sense of taste still isn't back to normal. Salt and sugar seem to be the most distorted. Dishes with tomato sauce (pizza, spaghetti, etc.) taste odd. it's better than it was a month ago, but still not right. My enthusiasm for food dies out quickly, before eating a whole portion. I'm hoping it will eventually get back to the pre-op level.
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