Non-Viable Heart

By AngelynG Latest Reply 2011-01-07 09:33:09 -0600
Started 2010-09-18 12:44:26 -0500

I have been told that my heart is not viable & it only functions at 25%. I also have low blood pressure. I have NO blocked arteries. Options are diet, exercise & medications. A later option could be a defibrillator implant. If my heart functions go down to 15-20%, I'll be put on a transplant list. Does anyone have this or a similar condition?

7 replies

Lipmeister i10
Lipmeister i10 2011-01-06 13:34:12 -0600 Report

I have CHF and was diagnosed with cardio myopathy 18 years ago. I was given 5 to 10 years and then I would need transplant I beat the odds. I have completely changed my life with diet and exercise and I believe that works. I have now gotten worse and 4 months ago I had a picc line put in and have been on Dobutamine since then. This has made things better as it gives my heart a boost. I am now listed as a 1b on the transplant list and may have to have a VAD put in to get me to the transplant. Turns out that O+ blood is a hard match.
Just do what the doctor asks you to do and don't quit. I believe a positive attitude helps more than anything else

AngelynG 2011-01-07 00:01:12 -0600 Report

I am so glad you had a period of reprieve! At my last cardiologist visit, my echocardiogram showed reduced heart funtion by 5%. I'm now at 20%. I get extremely tired & only walk short distances with support - shopping cart at the store, etc. I will be having a defibrillator implanted on Jan 14 - next Friday. I have an extremely positive attitude. My family/friends ask how I do the things I do - pure willpower. My medication keeps my BP low & heartrate slow (50-65). My doc says this will conserve function. Keep in touch on your situation.

Lipmeister i10
Lipmeister i10 2011-01-07 09:33:09 -0600 Report

My last echo shows my EF at well below 20%. they don't tell me how much below. I have had a St Jude bi-v ICD for about 41/2 years now.I have never been shocked yet but the pacemaker side did wonders for me. The procedure is pretty easy. I go back in for another right heart cath on the 17th. This will determine if a VAD would be better than the IV drug. Hopefully I can stay with the IV.
I am still able to get around pretty good and I drive myself to doctor appts. Getting used to staying home and doing all the chores was quite a change. Keep up the exercise and the good attitude

Acescoop 2010-10-06 00:35:52 -0500 Report

I was diagnosed with end stage heart disease after my second heart attack three years ago. I was listed for transplant and had an ICD (defib/pacer/rhythmn) implanted. I was put on the diet/exercise/med regimine and improved enough that I was made inactive for about a year. When I started my EF was around 20-25% but improved enough for me to return to work part-time and, as I said, go inactive for a time. This program DOES work. It bought me time until I finally had my transplant last April.

AngelynG 2010-10-06 01:02:44 -0500 Report

Thank you for the encouragement. I feel I'm doing good for my condition. He said exercise & diet w/medication will give some improvement but they don't expect much healing.

John Crowley
John Crowley 2010-09-22 11:47:52 -0500 Report

Welcome to the community. I'm sorry to hear of your difficult situation.

But help me understand a little more about what the doctors are telling you. Have you been diagnosed with congestive heart failure or heart disease?

With a heart only functioning at 25%, what kind of exercise have the doctors recommended?

I had a brother in law who passed away from congestive heart failure. I know when his heart was down to about 25% function, he couldn't even get out of bed.

Also, what kind of diet changes have been recommended?

AngelynG 2010-10-06 01:01:21 -0500 Report

I have CHF. My heart & (sp) pericardium were the size of a soccer ball 2 months ago. I am on a low sodium/low sat fat/low cholesterol diet. I am doing very well on that. I take my BP/heart rate/weight each morning & have a daily record. I walk until I start getting tired & have a back-up plan (wheelchair) in case I need to sit. So far I haven't had to use it. I can't sleep laying flat so I have a wedge & I sleep very well on that. He is increasing my meds (Coreg) & the last increase will be next Thursday. I have done very well with that, too. My BP is & has been very low for many years. I watch it carefully because when my hospitalization episode took place, my BP was 53/25 - heart rate was in the 90's+.

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