I am 48 year old woman and just learned that I have a pfo with right to left shunting (bubble test) . A cardiac MRI confirms that I do not have an ASD. I experience fatigue, sharp chest pains, inability to sleep , shooting pains in left eye and and dimmed vision is left eye. I am concerned. I wake up scared because the left side of my body is numb and I can't see well out of my left eye. My heart flutters and it is a little un-nerving.
I have always had a lower than normal ejection fraction and become easily fatigued upon exertion. I have had MVP, T wave inversion and sligltly enlarged heart and 35-50 % ejection fraction.
As a child, I would have stabbing chest pains and i was told I had an enlarged heart of unknown causes.
My choleterol and blood work are very good. I do not have diabetes and I am a health nut. I am not able to exercise , so I walk daily. Any recommendations on what to do next?
If the pfo is any significance the right side blood not having gone to lungs would be mixing with the oxygenated blood and as a result the heart may not be receiving enough oxygen and a source of some of your symptoms of fatigue as well as low cardiac output although the EF isn't low enough to cause a problem but with low oxygen count in your blood (shunt significance) may be enough to cause fatigue. The enlarged heart may be the cause of a low EF.
Your exercise routine (walking with a somewhat brisk pace) and diet should be of benefit for you. Blood work would rule out and electrolytic imbalance for heart fluttering. Has your doctor given an opinion of your flutters?...There is medication that can increase your heart's contractility and that good raise your EF.
It appears you are doing what's right for what you can control. If you are able to tolerate a better aerobic exercise, that can help increase your heart's EF.
Thank you for your reply. I am walking at a brisk pace. I will get an opinion on the flutters and chest pain when I go back to see my cardiologist. I am taking baby aspirin, but no heart meds other than natural supplements like fish oil, ubiquinol and OPC. I will ask about medicine to increase my hears contractility. Thank you so much for your time and well thought out answer.
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