Jun 10
Megnolia
Megnolia , Posted on SUPPORT NETWORK Blog

Pneumonia => CHF

Hi, 
Four years ago I was in my last year teaching Middle School Science before retiring. That winter I got bronchitis the went into my lungs and became pneumonia. I was given antibiotics and got better.  Over time I got more and more tired. I slept before I left for work, after I got there, at break, at lunch, after school was over,  before I went home and so on. I thought that it was a good thing I was retiring because I was getting old fast.  That summer I was still tired and finally diagnosed with CHF caused by my left ventricle having been deformed probably from a virus, not bacteria, that caused the pneumonia.  I have been on meds since then and my heart has responded well to them. I was very physically active before the CHF. Now not so much at all. I'm tired all the time. When I tell ( ok, I whine to) my cardiologist that I'm depressed and  frustrated because I have little energy and get up and go, he calls me his  miriacle  patient because of my test results, and to be happy.    Has anyone else with CHF had difficulty with the adjustment to the condition? I've gone to therapists, but their focus is primarily on social, chemical  or psychological causes for depression, rather than medically caused identity crisis.  If anyone else has had similar experiences  would like to talk about living with CHF. I would sure appreciate it!
Thanks, Megnolia
  • Wallyd1
    Wallyd1,
    Hi Megnolia.... I'm a CHF patient diagnosed Jan. 2016. When you use the term therapist it usually means someone who has a license to do therapy by the state. They are not allowed to prescribe meds or even interpret what an MD/psychiatrist would be able to do. My suggestion especially if you have insurance is to have a consultation with one. I have taken depression medication (Norpramin) since 1987 but have found out online..not from a doctor...that anti-depressants can be bad for a CHF patient...so I need to check with my doctor (not therapist!). As try to read all these "stories" at this site (great for knowing others have the same plight as yourself) a common thread seems to be "they aren't what they used to be" when it comes to "normal" living...like an automobile...we do wear out...and can't expect the same performance as years past. Luckily I've been able to take steps to have things done daily for me...so more time to enjoy life! By the way I was a high school teacher for 13 years before getting a "good" job...only lasted 1 year teaching Middle school~!
  • trvlgy2u
    trvlgy2u,
    I cannot get used to this funny voice or lack of one...stroke while angoigram...it happned Jan. 20 2016 maybe too soon for it to come back close to normal????????????Does anyone know?
  • fffaaa
    fffaaa,
    i feel for you i have been living with chf scene 2-2013 and it is not any fun at all mind was caused at the hospital when i went there having a heart attack i was put in a room for 5 days no doctor came in to see me for that 5 days just loading me up with pain meds. to make a long storie short i asked to be transferred to a different hospital after 4 days witch they did not do on the 5 day i had to have a fight with them about leaving and then had to drive my self 45 miles to another hospital where they went to work right away, at that point my heart function was down to 16% But i am still here not making great progress but doing some better please be sure of the doctor you choose as that is what has made the difference for me. i have been through 5 or 6 doctors in the 3 years scene all of them just thronging the same meds at with no improvement. this last one took an interest in what i was saying and has helped me a lot.
  • fffaaa
    fffaaa,
    to talk about it hobofred3@gmail.com
  • stache69
    stache69,
    Hi Megnolia, You are certainly not alone and I drove to the ER short of breath with edema on my ankles for the first time in my life back on 01/23/15. I really did not feel that terribly accept for some dizziness accompanied with the shallow breathing, which made it harder for me to go from my desk at work to the bathroom. The doctors said I am having heart failure, which I did not believe and had no family history. My only concern was I was obese and carried 328 pounds comfortably at 6'2 with no cholesterol or blood pressure issues. In fact, I am a former body builder so being big meant being healthy for me. They admitted me to the hospital for four nights and the angiogram showed no blockages at all with good arteries. But the ultrasound came back with an EF rate of 19. So I learned what that meant and queried all only to find myslef going home with an external defibrillator from ZOLL strapped into a bra support. Well, I{ was grateful to all and met a few docs at Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale that were so stuck up they tried to embarrass me in front of a nursing station, whiile I shut them up politely. All of a sudden you become a highly sort after patient when you are wealthy with good insurance. After a few months and fewer tachychardia episodes in the middle of the night when I am dreaming, I was told the only reason for my CHF was due to a flu they I had for about three weeks back in September 2014 that I never had treated. Then I physically was pushing my body by going on the OAsis of the Seas - a huge luxury cruise ship and walking on it like I never have before besides all the port excursions. From there it was onto three weeks of heavy duty walking at Disneyworld and more than usually indulgent delectable foods thru the holiday season. Bottom line after all of this is the flu became a virus and traveled to my heart. How? Why? Well, in May 2015 I went in for the "grandaddy" combo defibrillator/pacemaker implantation. It was suppose to be an in out procedure and somehow overnight two of the three leads came out and the young doctor was scowling out and almost outright accused me of pulling them out. So, it was back again to reattach and the doctor told me I had alot of muscle when he had to hook it up and I felt like asking him, didn't he notice that the first time he put it in, since I'm a former bodybuilder. But I shut up. Then he said I am barrel-chested and he gave me extra wiring which should correct this situation. My lesson from all of this was TRUST no DOCTOR....question all....and make certain you interview them becuase it is your life! I did get depressed but decided more pills was not going to be my answer and went to a psychiatrist and psychotherapist. The psychiatrist told me his folks were overweight and prescribed a medication to suppress my appetite. Then he moved to the other coast and I stayed only with the psychotherapist who helped me work thru the issues with shortness of breath. Eventually I needed to get the medication renewed and went to the family doctor who was shocked I was on it and said it causes weight gain. Meanwhile, I did not no why I was gaining weight and thank god he corrected this problem. Now,I am breathing more easily a few months later. So, it started with my being stubborn from the beginning and not getting the flu shot....not calling the family doctor when I had a cold, which I did not know was a flu for three weeks. When I went to the family doctor for the flu I told him I was getting over a cold and needed something for the anxiety for the first time in my life and something to help me sleep. He gave me pills for the conditions I asked for and never diagnosed the flu! Today, my CHF is 23 and I am pleased with my doctors but really can only take it one day at a time and struggle to walk short distances at most times. I'm on about 23 pills a day and nothing for depression because I refuse to let this condition bring me down. I hope this helps.............we are not alone...just terribly misunderstood. I'm very lucky to have a wonderful family doctor who coordinates my care, but TRUST NOBODY. I want to live and it is up to me to get the right care.... My email address is ATLANTIS19@AOL.COM..... Ric Hassan
  • hereiam
    hereiam,
    Hello, I went to the hospital with CHF, I had no problems afterwards that I know of. Never went back to any doctor for it and that was in 2005 of December. I am just so thankful for the blessings of prayer. I do take one medication for it. Take care and keep praying, eating right, some exercise, fresh air.
  • jthomas0624
    jthomas0624,
    Hi Megnolia, I have been living with CHF for 12 years and I just want you to know that it will get better. I had the same symptoms as you wrote about always tired and once I was diagnosed it took some time for my doctor to get the right combination of medication to worked with me and would treat my disease. I was 40 years old when I was diagnosed and eventually I had to go out on disability because as you know with this disease you must minimize your stress, just pay close attention to your body and the changes you will go through and don't be afraid to ask you doctor to explain these changes, I used to go to my doctor with a list of questions until I learned how to deal with my disease. Now I feel great but I know I will have some good days and some bad days I just don't over do myself.
  • reader1944
    reader1944,
    I was diagnosed in February of 2016. It came as a complete shock (I thought I had pneumonia) and really rocked my world. And I struggled with the idea and with the fatigue and suffered depression. Slowly I have adjusted, learned to plan and pace myself. That does not mean I don't hate this. Then I was diagnosed with sleep apnea and now have the pleasure (!) of a CPAC machine to adjust too. It has eased the fatigue some what.. Somehow CHF seems to be the step child of heart disease. i tried to join a hospital support group but it was cancelled. I was denied cardiac rehab because my ejection fraction was too high. I guess I am supposed to wait until I am sicker. I did find a cardiac risk program that would take me. I had to pay out of pocket but it has helped get me moving again. I share your frustration. This has truly taken over my life.
  • connectcare
    connectcare,
    Dear Magnolia, You are whining to the choir, my friend! I mourn my old self pre all this medical tragedy. Like you, my cardiologist says since I croaked five times, had five heart surgeries, dialysis, deformed foot anoxic brain, PTSD, balance and strength issues, that I am "doing just great"! Doctors push pills, and know nothing regarding the emotional challenge this is for patients. Plus, where are Support Groups anyway? The daily fatigue and never knowing how to modulate or anticipate my energy levels is daunting in itself. I love that everyone is so honest about how much we all seem to suffer in silence.
  • anna
    anna,
    I'M 51. FELL OUT ..chf... LEFT VENTRICLE. . LEAKING VALVE AND MUSCLES GONE. . IM TIRED. . DEPRESSED. .I HAVE 36% BMI.. OR HEART FUNCTION. .I JUST HAD FEMALE CANCER SURGERY 3 DAYS BEFORE. I HAD CATH 1 YEAR AGO DUE TO NOT FEELING WELL WAS TOLD IT WAS NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT. . IM TIRED OF BEING WHINEY. . TIRED OF EVERYONE SAYING YOU NEVER WANT TO DO ANYTHING. . WE LOOK FINE. . THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND. . DEFIBULATER AND PAcE MAKER was PUT IN 3 months ago. MY HEART IS TO WEAK TO REPLACE VALVE. .I FEEL LIKE A WALKING TIME BOMB. . MEDS MAKE YOU TIRED..I TODAY'S UNDERSTAND. .. NO CONFIDENCE. .100 % DISABLED FROM DR. . NO JOB. . JUST WAITING. .I WAS JUST STARTING TO WALK THENI GOT BRONCHITUS6 WEEKS AFTER DEVICE WAS IMPLANTED. . IM STAYING OVER AGAIN. .. HANG IN THERE.. TOGETHER WE CAN ALL HANDLE THIS. ...
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