Newly diagnosed angina sufferer in need of moral support

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Hi, All

Just got back from the cardio today and diagnosed with angina (narrowing of an artery I think).

Doc wanted me to stay and have a angiogram, but let me home with the proviso I'd immediately start on meds. Wants me to take the test soon, though (which I intend to).

My symptoms were being out of breath and really felt quite bad when taking the treadmill test.

I'm 72, but a non-smoker and teetotaler and I'm really quite floored by this news (and more than a little anxious and depressed).

Any help or advice appreciated by other sufferers.

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9 Replies

  • Posted

    Hello Rabmac!  It's normal to experience the feelings you are having when you receive a diagnosis like this.  I commend you on getting on here and posting your feelings.  Unless someone has gone through the experience, they don't fully understand.

    There are two types of angina.  Most of the prople on here have Prinzmetal angina, which is caused by the arteries on the heart spasming, which is the rarer of the two types.  The more common type of angina is caused by plaque over time build up inside the arteries on the heart.  Do you know which kind you have?  The treatments for the two are different types of angina are not the same, so if you have the common type of angina, some of the medications will be different.

    The best advice that I can give someone who is newly diagnosed is to learn what your triggers are, and this will vary depending on the type of angina you have.  If you have the more common type, increased physical activity is the most common cause for that.  If you have Prinzmetal's, the most common triggers are stimulants (caffeine, cocaine, methamphetamine), some cold medications (the ones containing pseudoephedrine), nicotine, high amount of ginger, stress, and symptoms usually occur at night when you are not active and frequently sleeping..What you need to do first is find out which one you have, and by all means, have the angiogram done ASAP.

    Hang in there.  As times goes on, you will adjust to this and learn what sets it off for you, so you can have symtoms less frequently in the future.  I would encourage you to talk to your doctor about how you are feeling, and possibly see a therapist (there is no shame in doing it, and I myself go to one).  Depression after receiving a cardiac diagnosis is EXTEMELY common, so your doctor might even be able to reccomend a therapist.  The therapist can teach you simple techniques to help you get through the painful/scary times such as breathing techniques and mindfulness exercises.  I find them very helpful when I am in a lot of pain.

    Hope this was of some help you you.  May God bless you richly,

    Cathy

     

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    • Posted

      Hi, Cathy

      Many thanks for your detailed response and kind words. On Friday 20 June I suffered papitations and an ambulance was called. Although it turned out the symptoms were most likely caused by anxiety, the doctors decided to admit me and carry out the angiogram on Monday 23 June.

      When this was carried out he cardioologist fitted three stents in two arteries and I was discharged on Tuesday 22nd. Follow up is with a regime of meds which began before I left hospital.

      I'm not particularly depressed, but do feel tired, but am now glad I've had the procedure.

      Again, many thanks for taking the time to post a reply — much appreciated.

      Robert

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  • Posted

    Hello..

    Good info to know  than later. Angina attacks are painful. I to have angina stable type.. I was a bit upset at first too, I think it's normal when any new health issue comes up. 

    Treatments for angina include lifestyle changes, medicines, medical procedures, and cardiac rehabilitation. Lifestyle changes a healthy eating plan, being physically active, losing weight if applicable and learning how to handle stress and relax. You can prevent or lower your risk for angina by making lifestyle changes . It helped me a great deal. Take baby steps.

    it's important to know the pattern of your angina, what medicines you take (keep a list) and how often you should take then, how to control your angina, and the limits on your physical activity. You should know how and when to seek medical help. My journal helps me understand my triggers better it will help u too..

    take care

    HOPE

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    • Posted

      Many thanks. Yes, I've a number of medications which I've to take daily, as well as a GTN spray for any episodes of angina.

      As you say, though, lifestyle and dietary changes are important, too, and I'll be implementing those.

      Best regards.

      Robert

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  • Posted

    Just glad I was able to help.  I was an R.N. before I was disabled by this last year (I'm just 37) and I really miss helping other people with their health.  Very happy that things are looking good for you.

    Cathy

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    • Posted

      Thanks again, Cathy.

      Sorry to hear of your disability. It's good of you to continue to use your skills to help others, however, via these forums.

      Best regards and kind wishes.

      Robert.

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    • Posted

      Hi cathy.. It's nice to have u aboard... experienced patients thru various experiences is important. Professionals the better....

      I echo rabmac ...

      take care...

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