Your Questions Answered
"My loved one has had a replaced aortic valve and a triple bypass. One of the bypasses failed so now he has 2 stents. He was diagnosed with severe CAD. I'm very scared for him. Can he still live a healthy life. I've changed his diet and he started walking plus takes meds. I'm unsure what the future holds. Will there be a future. Help!"Support Network Member
"Thank you for your question.Dr. Salman Arain, Interventional Cardiologist
I am happy to tell you that the future is bright – both for you and your loved one. Coronary artery disease (CAD) is a chronic (i.e. long lasting) condition which responds very well to a healthy lifestyle and the appropriate medications. Dietary modification and regular exercise are both essential to minimizing the risk of future events, and you have already taken the first steps. Other important treatments include smoking cessation, control of diabetes and hypertension, and cholesterol lowering medications. I want to reassure you that graft failure after coronary bypass is not uncommon or unexpected, particularly when a vein graft is involved and many years have passed since the operation. Coronary bypass surgery is still the treatment of choice for many patients with severe CAD, and stents are an excellent option when grafts fail or if new blockages develop later on in life. It is my recommendation that your loved one stay in contact with his cardiologist and follow his or her advice diligently, and that the two of you help each other maintain your new lifestyle so that you may enjoy each other’s company for years to come."
"I just want to ask a question - Do TIA's always show up on MRI's and CT scans especially if test is done after symptoms subside?"aesStroke01, Support Network Member
"A TIA, or transient ischemic attack, occurs when a person has brief symptoms of a stroke that subside on their own without treatment. These symptoms should last no longer than 24 hours, but usually resolve within minutes to hours. The presence of a stroke on an MRI is not necessary to define a clinical event as a TIA. In fact, most people who have a TIA, especially if the symptoms last for a very short time, will not have evidence of a new stroke on the MRI.Anjail Sharrief, M.D., Stroke Neurologist
If you are concerned that you have had a TIA, it is very important to discuss this with your doctor. You may need to be evaluated by a neurologist or stroke specialist. A TIA is an important warning sign that a larger stroke may happen and should be addressed urgently.
Thank you for taking the time to ask this important question.
"Are there guidelines for screening for ADHD and/or learning disabilities in children with congenital heart disease (specifically pulmonary valve atresia status post balloon dilatation)? If yes, when did they go into effect?"Support Network Member
"There are not specific recommendations for each cardiac diagnosis, but in general, screening is appropriate and recommendation given the increased risk to children with Congenital heart disease, particularly those who required cardiopulmonary bypass as a neonate or had prolonged exposure to suboptimal oxygen levels. Regarding treatment for ADHD, treatment is considered safe, but evaluation and treatment should be coordinated between the child's mental health professional or primary care doctor and their cardiologist.Dr. John Breinholt, Pediatric Cardiology
Here are some references:
"Hi all,My 2 strokes were approx 15 mos ago-on and off,I have experienced Tremors;Legs,but mostly in the arms(mostly Right)with some mild Hand Drop as well.Any Tips/hints for dealing with theses would be appreciated."MAURVZ800, Support Network Member
"Many stroke survivors have symptoms like yours. The tremors can be related to residual weakness after the stroke, impaired sensation, or problems with stiffness in muscles and joints. The ideal management depends on the actual cause of the symptoms. A neurologist or rehabilitation specialist can determine the cause of your symptoms and recommend treatment options. These options include physical therapy, occupational and /or treatment with medication.Anjail Sharrief, M.D., Stroke Neurologist
Thank you for the excellent question!"
"Hi all. My son had a stroke in utero or at birth... he presented with seizures during the first 36 hours of life which were controlled with phenobarbital. He's 7 months now and is doing as great as we could all hope for. Meeting his milestones and more and has no deficits or signs of stroke as of yet. We know that prognosis for this is extremely variable, which is why I'd like to hear if anyone has a similar case/ experience and what the outcome was (in regards to the area of the brain that was affected). His stroke was in his left frontal lobe, I'd say maybe 1/8th of his left side and a small part of white matter in the back of his right side... the neurologist said he is almost borderzone if that helps... I've looked at studies and patients classified as borderzone seemed to have good prognosis... but the studies are all over the map and I don't really know what to conclude at this point other than expect the worst but hope for the best. Any information from patients or parents of children with similar diagnosis would help tremendously."Support Network Member
"Thank you so much for this question. You are correct in the information you have received so far. There are 2 key aspects that we consider. The first is the location and extent of injury. The second aspect is brain plasticity. Brain plasticity can be seen in babies because the brain is developing and so different parts of the brain or undamaged area in the same location can take over function. Thus it is difficult to predict exactly how much difficulty a child will have in the future. Key aspect is following development closely and getting them in therapy to help practice skills they may be struggling with, so that the brain can use the pattern of repetition to build pathways that may have been disturbed due to the injury. I hope this helps you with what to expect in the future."Dr. Nivedita Thakur, Pediatric Neurologist
"What are some simple causes of pediatric stroke?"Support Network Member
"Finding the cause of a stroke is vital to providing the right treatment and preventing more injury. Doctors can find a cause in about two-thirds of the cases.
A common cause of ischemic strokes is that a blood clot forms in the heart and travels to the brain. This can be caused by congenital heart problems such as abnormal valves or infections. In these cases children may need surgery or antibiotics.
American Stroke Association"
"My mom is 59, has had 2 strokes now. The most recent affected her by far worse then the first. She has memory issues, at times balance, and since her stroke she feels like giving up. Because she feels like a burden, because she can't drive in crowded areas, and everyone treats her like a baby. She and I talk and she confides in me because I drive her to doctors appointments and she's my mom. I'm just worried. She's stated that it's no life she has. Everyone treats her like a baby, and she feels like they are taking away her dignity as a person. I don't know what else to do. I suggested counseling."AmandaPete, Support Network Member
"First off, what your mom is experiencing is understandable and common after a stroke. Not only is she dealing with her memory and physical limitations, she is grappling with the psychological challenges faced in the wake of a new medical event. It is not uncommon for survivors of stroke to have difficulty coming to terms with their new circumstances, and studies show that as many as one-third of stroke survivors experience frank depression. The added challenges of depression or other mental health issues can make physical recovery even more difficult. Encourage your mom to discuss her emotional well being with her physicians, or get her permission to do so on her behalf. She may need a proper evaluation for clinical depression. She may benefit from medications if appropriate or psychotherapy especially from a therapist who may be experienced at helping individuals address emotional challenges in the wake of a stroke or other health event. And finally, do reassure her that it's ok to not feel ok. The feelings she is expressing are understandable, but she there is hope that she can feel better."Dr Reena Pande, Cardiologist-focus on Emotional Well Being