Saturday, April 14, 2012

Is Your Heart Now the Weak Link in Your Body ?

After a heart attack, most people feel depressed and anxious.  Depressed because it makes them feel that either they are getting old or their body is letting them down. And anxious because, like waiting for the other shoe to drop, they are waiting for the next attack.  Are these reasonable thoughts ?  Maybe not, but they are real and they do happen to most survivors.

“By virtue of the fact that you now have scar tissue on your heart muscle, you may be at higher-than-normal risk for sudden death from heart arrhythmias.” ref Richard N. Fogoros, M.D. http://is.gd/dM6UlP

One cardiologist told me that, with proper attention to the Trilogy of Heart (stress, diet, exercise) and careful attention to meds, a heart survivor has a better chance of not having another heart attack than other people do.  For all of us here, we hope that is true.

3 comments:

  1. I wish your cardiologist was correct, Jeffrey. But so much depends on the individual heart, how much heart muscle/valve damage was sustained during the MI, other co-morbidities and risks (family history, age, etc) and many other contributing factors. And we know that the biggest risk factor for having a cardiac event is having already had one.

    Cardiovascular disease is also 20-30 years in the making. Docs can patch us up, stent us, bypass us, zap our wonky electrical circuits and send us on our way, but these heroics do not address what caused our cardiac events in the first place - sometimes decades earlier.

    I wish the stats on survivors taking your wise advice (managing stress, diet, exercise) were more positive, but they are in fact dismal! Thanks for this reminder!

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  2. While I agree with what you say and I agree that the risk of a repeat heart attack, for a survivor, is higher than for the general populace, there are two points to consider:
    1) the increased statistic includes all of the people who do not make the recommended life style changes and, if you do the right things, you can rise above these folks; and,
    2) many of the benefits of healing are from the neck up; if your cardiologist can instill hope and a positive attitude in you, your chances of survival are considerably higher.

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