May 7
wvspeedbump , Posted on SUPPORT NETWORK Blog

trying to keep going.

I am a 48 year old male. My problems started at age 38 when I had a heart attack. Had a stent put in place at that time. Two weeks later had the same symptoms but this time required by-pass surgery. While the by-pass was a success the procedure for closing was not. The wires were not tied off tight enough and my rib cage never healed together.


This wasn’t noted until 2 years after surgery when the pain would not go away. I went into rehab but ended up on pain medication. While this gave me a quality of life the pain still was there when I over did it. I was on pain medication for eight years and did well.


I have had to call the fire dept several time to help me out of the tub from soaking because the pain is so bad I can not lift myself up. ER visits are a few times each month thinking it’s a heart attack only to be told it sternum. The pain comes on worse when I walk, lie down, clean, bathe, sing. My wife left because having sex is oust of the question. I can’t even cast a fishing pole. I have been in a couple of pain management clinics but dismissed because my heart Dr will not allow nerve blocks to that part of my body. Since the surgery I have had four stents placed. If I did have the blocks I wouldn’t have felt the blockages and could have had a another heart attack. My family Dr has told me to fight for the nerve blocks because the worst that could happen is I do have a silent heart attack. This tells me my life is not worth saving.


I can not begin to tell you how many visits I have had to the ER and admitted. I deal with a full circle every day. I wake up in pain I go to sleep in pain. I also have severe angina and a panic disorder along with sternum pain. All in which cause chest pain. When the pain comes on I have to start sorting symptoms into categories. One for heart, panic or chronic. Each causes the other to get worse. There is so much to this story than I can write. I am looking for an advocate for pain medication so I can have a quality of life even if small. I am tired of being told by my family Dr and being admitted into mental health facilities because of depression. I keep telling him I would not be so depressed if I were not in consent pain and could live some what of a life. Martha at Northwood can not believe this story and nobody is doing anything about it. Even more floored when I told her all they want to do is commit me to a facility. Not sure where to turn at this point. so so much more to the story.






  • stache69
    I genuinely feel your pain and read between your words and understand how horrific it is for you. I've been living with CHF and my EF is 22, so the anxiety and constant fatigue and shortness of breath makes me wonder when I'll be in heaven. I've never ever been religious but I find great calm in sharing my tough times verbally with JESUS. Through time I've realized that combining the biofeedback and hynotherapy, which monitored my pain 30 years ago due to spinal issues along with JESUS, seems to take the edge off. I begin to realize I'm not alone in believing in my new friend and can NEVER expect my friends/family to share in my daily trials! I hope this helps you a doesn't just happen overnight and after a few weeks of talking aloud in my truck to Jesus and then when I have one on one time, I realized I'm no longer alone and much less fearful and able to cope more effectively.
  • BevPohlit
    I feel that keeping your weight in a healthy area, and eating right may help. This is hard to respond not knowing more so, I'm shooting from the hip, as they say. Exercise is sooo important. Eating healthy and exercise is important for heart health. if you want to talk to a professional do it!!!! There is no shame in reaching out for some advice
  • reynoer
    Dave, I can relate to the panic disorder. I had a stroke 2 years ago and am rehabbing to regain mobility and have been plagued with panic disorder for years. I hope you can get the nerve blocks. It sounds like that would give you quality of life. Eric
  • Gray
    I am sorry you are struggling so much. I do agree with a previous poster about eating healthier being very helpful. I think that and starting to exercise for the first time in my life are what have made big changes for me. I struggled with my sternum after my heart surgery. It did not heal and would one side would move forward and out of line. I had a doctor who suggested physical therapy. This was great. I still do all of the physical therapy exercises and it has made a big difference. I still have pain if I lift anything over ten pounds. It is no longer constant pain.
  • tstefans
    To all posts: Sorry to hear about your health problems and hope you are better soon. Thorey
  • aussiegram
    someone I know had the open heart surgery & the chest wires not being tight enough. she recently had the sternum re-opened & re-wired closed. pain gone. is this possible for you? had it done already? can you find another doctor? find another surgeon? I can tell from your post that you are desperate to stop hurting. please find another physician who will permit nerve blocks.
  • purple heart
    purple heart,
    I'm sorry to hear about your pain! Recovering from heart surgery is painful! However it should get better! I hope you will find help soon! I had a cardiac arrest at age 34! I was in the hospital for 3 months! I had a lot of complications and pain. I hope your pain will fade soon! Just do NOT give up hope!
  • Sue4him
    I am the wife of a stroke survivor. his last major stroke was 4 years ago, and although he has come a long way back he is angry most of the time and refuses to exercise. He tells me he does not want to be well. Jesus is the only way I get through a day. Yesterday someone asked me how my husband is and I just cried. And then prayed. And Jesus was there to comfort and help me. He is actually ALIVE and ready to help. When I heard He paid for my sins and I admitted I was guilty and asked Him to come into my life, everything changed. He is ready to help. And He also is ready to heal anyone who comes to Him. On the cross He took every sickness and pain, Isaiah 53. He really means it, He wants to heal everything, even broken hearts, and especially broken bodies. I have seen Him raise dead people. He has all the power. And He really does care about all of us.
  • Grace
    Praying for you; so young & so much pain. I agree pain makes one depressed. Can they open your chest and re-wire? I agree get another Dr. Sometimes I think my sternum was wired too tightly but after reading your post decided I should be thankful. And besides I am 84 and ready to leave for heaven. Let us know if you get this fixed.
  • Trish Peterson
    Trish Peterson,
    Will pray for you. I agree; try another Dr. Pain does cause depression. So does lonliness. I bet you each and every one of us has depression. Don't give up hope!
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