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Flying after angioplasty
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Flying after angioplasty

How long after angioplasty will my 64 year old husband be able to fly from U.K. to South Africa (a 12 hour flight)? He had his first angioplasty a week ago.
Thankyou.
Maretha.
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He will have to see his doctor to get his okay before flying.  With the added pressure and radiation he needs to be careful during flying.  My friend, a pilot, flew his plane too early after valve replacement.  When he landed, he had a heart attack.  He was thankful it wasn't when he was in the air.  
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Strong contraindications to air travel or moving into a higher altitude by coronary patients include 1. New-onset angina. 2. Unstable angina. 3. Frequent or high-grade ventricular ectopy. 4. Severe or poorly controlled hypertension.  If these conditions exist were the case, they should be addressed prior to the air travel.

Blood pressure initially increases at high altitude due to the initial stress of low oxygen triggering neurohumoral changes. However people who suffer from high blood pressure can go up to high altitude as long as this is well controlled and they continue to take their medication.
  
Coronary heart disease:  People with a history of heart attack (myocardial infarction) and even those with coronary artery bypass grafts or angioplasty but with no angina, can trek up to high altitude provided they are fit and able to walk rigorously at low altitude. The high altitude does not seem to add any extra burden to the heart

If blood pressure is controlled and there is no chest (pain), no problem.  It is the elevated blood pressure and its consequences that are the issue.  Angioplasty isn't affected by controlled HBP and no angina (chest pain) due to ischemia clears the way for normal functionality.
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Every case is different; but, I personally flew 4 days after an angiogram......no problem!
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