Symptoms of dissection

Posted , 5 users are following.

This discussion has been locked due to a period of inactivity. Start a new discussion

Good Morning,

I have an ascending thoracic anorta aneurysm and am scheduled for elective surgery November.  My question to the group is, what are the symptoms of dissection in the event it happens before I go in for surgery?  I do have a stent that was put inside my heart in April, and it seems as if I am having more heart pains in my chest.  Any info will be appreciated.  

0 likes, 19 replies

Report

19 Replies

Next
  • Posted

    Hi sec2709

    The fact that you recently had surgery to put in a Stent is good reason for more chest pain. Unfortunately, has the body heals, we feel pain. Of course, I would closely monitor the kind of chest pain you're having and if it doesn't feel normal, contact your doctor or ER immediately!

    The feeling/pain of dissection can be different for everyone depending on the location (ascending, descending or root) and size of the aneurysm. Personally, I/doctors was aware of my aneurysm for 8yrs but I never experienced any pain related to the aneurysm. As it started to grow suddenly, I began to have upper back and shoulder pain. I also started to experience chest pains.

    My neice husband was unaware that he had a aneurysm and he was at the gym, on a treadmill when his dissected. He felt sick (nausea sick) and went home. He said he couldn't sleep all night because of nausea/vomiting and general not feeling well. The following day he went to ER, was admitted, had test and doctors discovered dissection. This was early April 2016. He has gone back to work and is doing well.

    Google dissections, there's a lot of information out there including doing a search on this site. I'm sorry my answer was long but I hope it helped. Just stay healthy for your surgery in Nov and you will be fine. Wishing you the best, give an update when you can..

    Report
    • Posted

      Thank you, gigi

      I'm not sure what causes the pain, stent, aneurysm, or something else.  I had another scan this morning, and was extremely dizzy after scan...came home & became very nausal and started throwing up.  I've had several scans but this is the first time it has made me so ill.  Girl, I'm not looking forward to this.  How are you doing?  Symptoms of pain, how long, meds taken, etc.  How long before you could work inside the home?

      Report
  • Posted

    Just curious to know why you said "elective" surgery? What size is your aneurysm? This surgery is usually medically necessary because rupture in most cases means death.. If you have insurance, that one word could made a difference.

    Report
    • Posted

      Sorry, I did not see this until now...new research has proven that people of small statue are not always able to wait til for the 5cm...I'm 5'2", 120 lbs and mine is a 4.5, but, it has been constantly growing for the last almost 3 years.  Also, I'm 70 years old.  My consultation with Dr. Estrera in Houston was very candid about all of this and I told him I would rather have the surgery BEFORE dissection because of all the damage that is done which causes more areas of the aorta to be replaced during dissection.  As we age, our body does not heal as well and more susceptible to other issues during surgery.  He stated that elective is always better than emergency with better results.  It's still a risky surgery which he stated I understood.  I've tried to glean as much info as I can from this forum to educate mysefl and also all research I can find on the web.  As he said, "I don't have a magic pill to make it go away and you will have to deal with it sooner or later".  My concern is the healing time after surgery...and praying it does not dissect before surgery Novembe 1.  How are you doing with your healing?

      Report
    • Posted

      Yes, you are of a smaller statue and that is a very important factor because your aorta is smaller so dissection or rupture could occur in a smaller aneurysm. Youre right abut the surgery having less complications when its planned vs an emergency. My aneurysm started growing suddenly and rapidly in a matter of about 18 months. My doctors were more concerned about rupture than dissection. You ask about pain, meds, etc after surgery. I can't sugar coat it, this was a very painful surgery. Recovery has proven interesting as well! I was still in a lot of pain when I was discharged, actually thought I was sent home to soon..lol. I was on several meds during my hospital stay. At least 3 pain meds, aspirin, blood thinners and a host of other things. It takes the body a few days to bounce back from the anesthesia, other surgical meds and just the procedure itself and began to function properly. I went home taking oxycodone and Tylenol. I started attempting things around the house with help after 8 weeks. It's not just the plethora of different pains you will experience but tiredness came quickly. It's been approx 3 mos. and although various pains still exist, I am MUCH better! Do your best to maintain good health prior to surgery and you will be fine!

      Report
    • Posted

      Thanks for all this info....I am on a high fibre and high protein diet now....walking daily...lot of fruit, etc.  Trying to get my body in better shape to have the surgery.  I'll have to say...I don't like pain!  I can take extreme pain, short time..but....not continual pain long time!  Did you have any home health or someone with you when you got home?  When did you have to go back for a follow up with surgeon?  Is your  ongoing care given by your cardio?  How quickly could you shower?  I've read several people had problems lying flat on bed....what was your experience?  Sure hope you don't mind answering these questions!  LOL

       

      Report
    • Posted

      I don't mind answering questions! I don't tolerate pain well. The pain was horrendous when I woke up!! The breathing tube was still in..uggh.. but it has to stay in until you are awaken to make sure you can breathe on your own. Thankfully, it was removed quickly though. There were tubes seemingly everywhere. They all hurt..! My incision was closed with a"wound vac"...interesting gadget I might add. I was sent home with a walker, shower chair and potty seat (it makes you sit higher). I could shower (don't let water run directly on incision) when I got home but no tub baths until your incision is completely closed. You will need someone, you can't do much of anything on your own. I stayed with my mom for the first week, then I went home. My husband worked everyday but my 13 yr old grandson was my godsend !! He helped day and night. A nurse came twice a week for 3 weeks. I could/can not lay down flat! A recliner chair became best friend. Now, I arrange 5-6 pillows in bed because I'm tired of sleeping in the recliner. My return visit was 2 weeks after being discharged and 2 weeks after that and...lol!! Cardiothoracic released me at 8 weeks. But referred me pain management. I am followed by primary care now. Sounds like you're on the right track with staying healthy. Your issues will be minimal and your healing quick! Continue to take care of yourself.

      Report
    • Posted

      WOW!  I can see this truly is a battle!  You can read and do your research from the medical side of these aneurysms...but...to truly know what happens after the surgery is  another world!  Do they use the wound vac on everyone?  What does pain management truly help you with?  I have an electric bed, so I can fix that.  Do you feel well enough to travel 3-4 hours by car for the 2 week follow up?  I am that far from Houston where I will have surgery.  Of course, I will have to come home after surgery by car.  All info I can get now, I will try to put in place and be  prepared for this horrendous event.  Wish I did not know of this aneurysm and it would just rupture and be over with within 10 minutes, but, the uncertaintly of dissecting and causing more damage prevails....that I truly don't want! Was your pain under control right after surgery in ICU and in the step down unit?

      Report
    • Posted

      They used the wound vac on me because I am allergic to the adhesive/glue in Dermabond. They wire the sternum together and there are internal stitches which dissolve. The hospital was 1 1/2 hr drive from my home. I slept all the way home! You will probably need to stop at least once to get out to walk. If you have a 2 week check up, you will probably feel better for that trip. No my pain was not under control right after surgery. There's too many things attached. There was the catheter, the arterial line (mine was in my neck), two drain tubes, lines connected incase there's an issue, blood pressure cuff, heart monitor, IV and I'm probably missing something!! It depends on how well you are progressing as to how fast things get removed. I never made it past step-down, I was sent home. Don't expect to get any rest..lol, not happening!! I couldn't eat, no appetite, the smell of food made me sick. I'm sure everyone does not experience that. You can't use your hands to push or pull yourself up so strengthen your legs to get up with help from your hands. I promise it gets better though!

      Report
    • Posted

      The PA with Dr. Estrera told me about all the tubes, lines attached out of surgery...will try to remove breathing tube day after surgery.  I've got to tell my family so they don't panic when they see all these things attached.  But, she also told me that they would definitely keep me out of pain while in the ICU and send meds home for pain.  I've started walking daily to strengthen my legs.  But, honestly, I am concerned if they are not going to keep me pain free while in ICU and step down.  I'm more concerned about being on the ventilator and not being able to tell them that I need something for pain!  They will not know me as a patient and will not be able to look at my face or body movements and know that I am in pain.  How did you communicate while on the tube?

       

      Report
    • Posted

      I expressed my feelings about the tube beforehand, so they agreed to see if I could come off as soon as I woke up. When I awaken in ICU, they ask my name and said if I wanted it removed, I had to try to talk. I tried to tell them and they removed it immediately! I was on a lot of meds in ICU but they tell you, nothing will completely keep you pain free and it didn't. It was tolerable but not pain free. I had pain meds by IV and orally..

      Report
    • Posted

      OK...I've got to psych myself for sure!  Will you have to have any additional surgeries?

      Report
    • Posted

      No additional surgeries. This aneurysm was my only health problem. But, yes try to prepare mentally. I pray your pain is nowhere near the pain I suffered. I can't explain what I felt but I'm an army vet (10yrs), I'm 5'6 175, I had a hysterectomy 8 yrs ago,that's how they found the aneurysm. I was in 1 auto accident which eventually led to being drug down the street by my own car. Another auto accident where I had to be cut out of my car! I wasn't responsible for either, thank goodness. I'm no stranger to pain but I'm terrified of it . I thought I could handle it but it FAR EXCEEDED my expectations! I pray this not your experience but I think it's better to be prepared but not have the experience. The nurses in ICU called me "superwoman", although I NEVER felt that way. Everyone including my doctors said my recovery has been fantastic and that pain is normal the first few weeks. I read that you should keep your incision/scar covered the first 6 months to a year. Exposure to the sun (supposedly) is not good. I'm not certain but I keep it covered anyway and I don't think I will ever expose it. I'm in the process of changing my wardrobe so everything comes up high on my neck.

      Report
    • Posted

      Gosh, Girl.....seems like your body had already been through a lot!  Hopefully, I can come through this as well as you.  I do thank you so much for sharing with me.  I certainly don't want another surgery, which is primary reason I'm going for elective.  

      Report
    • Posted

      You are doing the right thing. I used to run at least a couple miles a day and jazzercize. I waiting for permission form my (and my body) to go to Zumba. I eat healthy also and love being active. It's sounds like you are active and healthy as well. I have no doubt, you will do just fine. You are doing the same thing I did to be prepared. I know the aneurysm and surgery is ALWAYS on your mind but relax as much as possible. Continue to do what you're doing and it sounds like you have a great support system. November will be here before you know it.

      Report

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion

Report as inappropriate

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up