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View Full Version : Dr. Thinks I had a heart attack!!!



mrstjscott
06-02-2011, 05:47 PM
Hi everyone. I just got home, literally about an hour ago. I was admitted into the hospital on May 31 because I was experiencing chest pains, rapid heartbeat and clammy hands. I was actually at my pcp's office waiting to be seen when these symptoms happened. She called the ambulance and then I was admitted.
I had a cat scan of my chest; an echocardiogram, stress test, and of course, routine blood work. All of which came back NEGATIVE. However, the cat scan of my chest did reveal scar tissue on the lower part of my heart.
I was on 50 mgs of metoprolol and upon my release, the doctor upped the dosage to 100 mgs per day.
I asked every doctor I saw was this attributed to Lupus. They ALL said NO, BUT NONE OF THEM CAN TELL ME WHAT IS REALLY GOING ON.
HELP!!!
P.S. I HAVE AN APPT WITH THE CARDIOLOGIST ON JUNE 16.

tgal
06-02-2011, 05:57 PM
I wanted to start this off with an LOL but I thought better of it because it was not at you or the heart attack! I am so sorry that happened to you but I am glad you were somewhere that knew what to do! The LOL was at the doctors saying it has nothing to do with the Lupus. It may not but I went through all of that with my seizures. Everyone said ohh no the seizures have nothing to do with any of this although they started after I became ill. I am glad you are going to see a cardiologist! He/She will do many other tests and get more information. Please keep us posted on what is going on and take care of yourself!!

Gizmo
06-02-2011, 08:14 PM
I just had a cardiac cath yesterday, because of chest pain, and the cardiologists found that my arteries are wonderfully clean, but I have 3 other problems which they are pretty sure are a result of lupus (pulmonary hypertension, stiff heart muscle and inflammation of the small blood vessels around the heart). My cardiologist told me that people with lupus are at a higher risk for heart attacks, and that the youngest woman he ever treated with a heart attack was a lupus patient. He said there has been a lot of research in the past 4 years on lupus and heart disease. If your cardiologist doesn't know anything about lupus, find another one! My guess is that the cardiologist will want to do a heart cath. That way they can measure pressures in your heart and look for blockages in your coronary arteries. Please let us know how the appointment goes. I'll send good wishes your way.

tgal
06-02-2011, 08:22 PM
I just had a cardiac cath yesterday, because of chest pain, and the cardiologists found that my arteries are wonderfully clean, but I have 3 other problems which they are pretty sure are a result of lupus (pulmonary hypertension, stiff heart muscle and inflammation of the small blood vessels around the heart). My cardiologist told me that people with lupus are at a higher risk for heart attacks, and that the youngest woman he ever treated with a heart attack was a lupus patient. He said there has been a lot of research in the past 4 years on lupus and heart disease. If your cardiologist doesn't know anything about lupus, find another one! My guess is that the cardiologist will want to do a heart cath. That way they can measure pressures in your heart and look for blockages in your coronary arteries. Please let us know how the appointment goes. I'll send good wishes your way.

Gizmo is completely right! Now that I have a diagnosis of Lupus they have figured out that the issues with my chest pain are not related to blocked arteries but due to inflammation and pulmonary hypertension. You wouldn't have believed that I would have hypertension because until the last few years my blood pressure was always low. When I say low I mean LOW! The last surgery I had my blood pressure was 95 over 60. They couldn't give me any pain meds until I woke up because of it. Now my blood pressure can go off the charts. I agree with Gizmo about the cardiologist. If he/she doesn't know much about Lupus and the heart go somewhere else. It is something that we have to pay attention to.

Glad to know that your heart is OK Gizmo. Keep us posted on you as well

Gizmo
06-02-2011, 08:31 PM
Now that I have a diagnosis of Lupus they have figured out that the issues with my chest pain are not related to blocked arteries but due to inflammation and pulmonary hypertension. You wouldn't have believed that I would have hypertension because until the last few years my blood pressure was always low. When I say low I mean LOW!

Pulmonary hypertension and regular ol' hypertension are actually two very different things, with different causes. My BP runs low, too, but the pulmonary artery pressure is high. What has your cardiologist told you about your pulmonary hypertension, Mari? Is he/she concerned? Are you on meds? Are they doing any kind of follow up?

mrstjscott
06-02-2011, 08:36 PM
Thank you Mari and Gizmo for your advice. I will ask my new cardiologist if he knows anything about lupus and how it affects the heart. My pcp wanted me to come in to discuss "inflammation" because my "level" was above normal when she took my blood, but when I went to the hospital emergency room, the doctors took my blood and said that my "inflammation" level was even higher than what level my pcp had discovered.
Right now, I am afraid. I was given NO REAL ANSWER. The docs at the hospital said I DO NOT HAVE HEART DISEASE. They said these episodes ARE NOT RELATED TO LUPUS. They said I have been in a bad flare for a while. DUH!!! But they don't really know too much about lupus so I am going to see a Rheumy in August (that's the soonest I could get an appointment). I am now taking 100 mgs of metoprolol because of the chest pains. I can't even walk from my bedroom to the bathroom without getting chest pains and/or short of breath. The docs want to blame it on hypertension because my blood pressure keeps going up, but while in the hospital, it was stable. I am still fighting the sleeping demon who won't let me sleep. I am scared nobody will find out what's wrong with me until it's too late.

tgal
06-02-2011, 08:44 PM
Pulmonary hypertension and regular ol' hypertension are actually two very different things, with different causes. My BP runs low, too, but the pulmonary artery pressure is high. What has your cardiologist told you about your pulmonary hypertension, Mari? Is he/she concerned? Are you on meds? Are they doing any kind of follow up?

LOL This is gonna tick you off. They gave me nitro because "Your heart is fine. It is the valves and arteries getting there. They are inflamed and spasmming, this should open things up" My cholesterol is REALLY high too and has been since I first got sick. My cardiologist said "I don't want to give you meds for that because you are on too much medicine as it is". LOL Yes, I am going to find a new one because my last Ultra Sound/ Stress Test and such was 9 months ago. I have to have it all redone at a year although I am not sure how without insurance.

tgal
06-02-2011, 08:50 PM
Thank you Mari and Gizmo for your advice. I will ask my new cardiologist if he knows anything about lupus and how it affects the heart. My pcp wanted me to come in to discuss "inflammation" because my "level" was above normal when she took my blood, but when I went to the hospital emergency room, the doctors took my blood and said that my "inflammation" level was even higher than what level my pcp had discovered.
Right now, I am afraid. I was given NO REAL ANSWER. The docs at the hospital said I DO NOT HAVE HEART DISEASE. They said these episodes ARE NOT RELATED TO LUPUS. They said I have been in a bad flare for a while. DUH!!! But they don't really know too much about lupus so I am going to see a Rheumy in August (that's the soonest I could get an appointment). I am now taking 100 mgs of metoprolol because of the chest pains. I can't even walk from my bedroom to the bathroom without getting chest pains and/or short of breath. The docs want to blame it on hypertension because my blood pressure keeps going up, but while in the hospital, it was stable. I am still fighting the sleeping demon who won't let me sleep. I am scared nobody will find out what's wrong with me until it's too late.

I am so sorry you are having to go through this! Do they have you on anything to help you sleep? I ask this because our illness makes us get little sleep and little sleep makes us get worse. I understand the fear. I have been there. It is going to be OK because you are going to the ER at the slightest thing that is wrong. Don't worry about money or insurance you simply worry about yourself. Don't try to hold off for the doctors and let yourself get worse. It doesn't matter if you are at the ER every 2 days you keep yourself safe until you can get someone else to do it.

If you start feeling to scared or just need to talk let us know. My sleep meds/ fibro meds are not working that well anymore so I am often up in the wee hours. Just let me know and I will meet you in chat and keep you company.

Gizmo
06-02-2011, 08:53 PM
LOL This is gonna tick you off. They gave me nitro because "Your heart is fine. It is the valves and arteries getting there. They are inflamed and spasmming, this should open things up" My cholesterol is REALLY high too and has been since I first got sick. My cardiologist said "I don't want to give you meds for that because you are on too much medicine as it is". LOL Yes, I am going to find a new one because my last Ultra Sound/ Stress Test and such was 9 months ago. I have to have it all redone at a year although I am not sure how without insurance.

Actually, my cardiologist gave me long acting nitro, too. So the valves and arteries that feed your heart are messed up but you don't have heart disease? Pulmonary hypertension is heart disease. It can potentially be fatal over time. No cholesterol medicine? That doesn't say much for how he will take care of you. Are you on Plaquinil? My cholesterol dropped a lot when I went on Plaquinil. I recently had to cut my dose because I'm turning blue and having vision problems, and my cholesterol went back up. I remember reading somewhere, back when I was first diagnosed, that Plaquinil can lower cholesterol.

Gizmo
06-02-2011, 09:07 PM
Thank you Mari and Gizmo for your advice. I will ask my new cardiologist if he knows anything about lupus and how it affects the heart. My pcp wanted me to come in to discuss "inflammation" because my "level" was above normal when she took my blood, but when I went to the hospital emergency room, the doctors took my blood and said that my "inflammation" level was even higher than what level my pcp had discovered.
Right now, I am afraid. I was given NO REAL ANSWER. The docs at the hospital said I DO NOT HAVE HEART DISEASE. They said these episodes ARE NOT RELATED TO LUPUS. They said I have been in a bad flare for a while. DUH!!! But they don't really know too much about lupus so I am going to see a Rheumy in August (that's the soonest I could get an appointment). I am now taking 100 mgs of metoprolol because of the chest pains. I can't even walk from my bedroom to the bathroom without getting chest pains and/or short of breath. The docs want to blame it on hypertension because my blood pressure keeps going up, but while in the hospital, it was stable. I am still fighting the sleeping demon who won't let me sleep. I am scared nobody will find out what's wrong with me until it's too late.

Boy can I relate you your last statement! I actually WANTED the heart cath so that I would know one way or the other what was wrong. I also take metoprolol (to control a heart rhythm problem). It should help with the racing heart and maybe even the anxiety (some people take it before speaking in public or fool a lie detector test). My best guess is that the test(s) they are using to check inflammation are SED rate and CRP. Have you spoken with your PCP since you were discharged? She should be following up with you about your labs and the flare you are in. That's not something that can wait until August, nor is it something the cardiologist is likely to want to treat. If you aren't already on Plaquinil, that's a pretty easy place to start and your PCP should be able to handle that. She should also be able to give you some Prednisone to calm things down, since Plaquinil usually takes several months to kick in. If I were in your shoes, I would insist that my PCP monitor and start to treat my lupus until your appt in August. If she won't do that, then see if she will call the rheumy and ask what tests to order and at least have the labs ready. Then maybe when she's on the phone, the two docs will decide that you really can't wait and get your appt moved up. Hey - it could happen! LOL

tgal
06-02-2011, 09:11 PM
Actually, my cardiologist gave me long acting nitro, too. So the valves and arteries that feed your heart are messed up but you don't have heart disease? Pulmonary hypertension is heart disease. It can potentially be fatal over time. No cholesterol medicine? That doesn't say much for how he will take care of you. Are you on Plaquinil? My cholesterol dropped a lot when I went on Plaquinil. I recently had to cut my dose because I'm turning blue and having vision problems, and my cholesterol went back up. I remember reading somewhere, back when I was first diagnosed, that Plaquinil can lower cholesterol.

I am on plaquenil and have been for going on 2 years. I have a total of 11 meds that I take daily and some of them I take multiple at a time. Yes, The valves and arteries themselves are even OK but the Lupus is causing them to become inflamed and spasm so it doesn't let the blood flow as it should. That is actually what is causing my chest pain and my seizures.

merryalliss30
06-03-2011, 02:51 AM
I recently had a stress test too and it was normal. My blood pressure was way lower than normal and I passed it with flying colors. They also took pictures of my heart and it all turned out okay. I thought this test puts you out of the woods with a heart problem. But you did all these tests, and the only test revealing anything is a CT scan? I had too many PVC's on my EKG and he sent me off for that test since I am having symptoms of a blockage (chest pain & shortness of breath on exersion). It is also a major problem in my family. I had a plain x-ray last year that looked okay. That's awesome when a doctor keeps on looking past negative tests to find the problem. Typically one comes back negative and they call it quits. Good luck with everything.