ASD and PFO Repair

I had my ASD repaired three weeks ago today, via cardiac catheterization. During the procedure my cardiologist also found that I had a PFO. He was able to repair both using a Gore Helex device and a Amplatzer device. My recovery has gone well, (slower than I expected) but it has been good. This whole process has been a whirlwind of questions and answers. I received great care from everyone involved with my care while in the hospital. I thought I had had all my questions answered before leaving the hospital, and was prepared for what I could expect to feel during my weeks of recovery. Not the case. I have so many questions about what pains or discomforts are normal and what is not normal. I have called the doctors office so many times I am starting to feel like a pest. Can anyone share their experience and shed some light on how they felt afterwards? I still occasionally have discomfort in my chest and sometimes feel like something is sitting on my chest. I don't want to call the nurse for every little twinge of pain but have no one else to ask. I know it has only been three weeks and what I feel may be normal, and that it may take a little while longer to get back to feeling normal again. But it would be greatly appreciated if someone could share. I feel like I have turned into this neurotic, over worried about everything patient. Please help.

Don't feel bad about being worried regarding your health. Ask ?'s til you get answers. It's been 7 mos since my ASD closure, I just had a bubble study Tuesday and everything regarding the closure seems to be okay though the area has not healed yet, I'm told that will happen over time, that the tissue will grow over the device. I was intially thinking I would be healed within 6 mos and that's not the case. All in all I'm glad to hear that your procedure went well, get plenty of rest and don't over exert yourself. I hear it's dif with ea. person.

Hang in there, rest and rest and rest. My recovery did not go as I expected it would. I was so weak and exhausted and had pain and began to wonder if I had made a good decision regarding my ASD repair.

I think that the body has to have time to react and adapt to having these devices put into such a critical organ. I only took 2 weeks off of work and that was a mistake. I also pushed myself and I had to just chill and let my body heal. My heart was weak, I had to really give myself time to rest and heal.

I also think having a good and caring cardiologist that is aware of the procedure is key.

Rest Well, Ask lots of questions and demand answers. It is your heart they messed with !

Hi Kimberlee!

I know exactly what you mean. I was just telling my friends that I hate thinking I've become a huge pain in the butt. I've bugged the doctors with questions too, and also feel like a pest but like the previous person said... it's not our kidneys, it's not a broken bone... it's our heart!! A couple of weeks after my surgery, I was extremely anxious... I never imagined how much it would bother me to have a piece of metal stuck in my heart. I was annoyingly dependent on family and friends because I did not want to be alone. I was scared because sometimes my left arm would ache and feel numb, sometimes even my leg... I'd get random aches in my chest.. a couple of palpitations now and then. The worst, as mentioned before, was the anxiety and I've never considered myself a super anxious person. It's now been two months and I'm feeling really good. :) I've learned that sometimes my chest pain might just be gas (which I had had before I ever knew anything was wrong). Of course, if I feel anything more off than that, I still will definitely call my doc. For now, I'm so happy to be back to zumba and running and all the stuff I used to do (except for soccer... at least a few more months before I try that again ;) ) Don't worry about becoming a neurotic... we have to be our own advocates. Docs have tons of patients and it's easy to become just a #, so maybe they do need a friendly reminder now and then. ;D Hope that helps!!!

Thank you to both Rebecca Boles and Magda for your answers to my posting. It is so nice to know that I am not the only patient to feel that way. Thank you for the words of support and encouragement.

It is now four weeks out from my repair. I just had my first echo/bubble study this morning. I am still waiting to hear from the doctor on the results, but I am proceeding as if everything is healing the way it should. I am thinking positively that I will indeed get good news.

I was telling my husband the other night that I really feel old, I need one of those pill organizers to help me keep track of all my meds. Anyone else feel the same? I guess that this is just part of the process and I am okay with that. I am just so very grateful that my heart issue was found when it was and that they were able to take care of it and get it repaired. I marvel at the advances in heart health. How blessed are we to have access to these kinds of treatments. Life is wonderful.