Author Topic: cardiac bypass  (Read 6989 times)

franksjj

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cardiac bypass
« on: July 02, 2009, 15:51:09 UTC »
i had a surprise heart attack and triple bypass surgery 10 weeks ago.  i'm trying to figure out how quickly i can dive again and what criteria to look for.  so  far my searches of the web including DAN have not  found very detailed information ie vaguely 6-12 months wait after surgery and physically  fit (eg level 4 on bruce scale).  here's what i seem to understand: the sternum should be more or less healed in 12 weeks.  rehab of cardio, aerobic, and chest muscles will vary depending on how careful and hard you work at it.  understanding the basic physics and physiology related to diving, it seems to me i should be able to return to diving as soon as i get fit and there are no or minimal lingering cardiac problems eg arrythmias and such.   i was in good shape before surgery and i'm rehabing fast and well.  i hope to dive in another 8 weeks or so. i would appreciate any comments based on either personal experience or professional medical/dive knowledge--including concluding i'm an idiot for pushing so fast, ha ha.
upekkha (sanskrit: equanimity)
j

DocV

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Re: cardiac bypass
« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2009, 16:19:29 UTC »
Hi Frank,

All wound healing complete; acceptable strength and range of motion in the upper body (and elsewhere); ability to attain, or closely reach, 13 mets upon exercise stress testing without chest pain, shortness of breath, EKG abnormality or other worrisome event; all imaging and visualization of the heart and associated coronary vasculature within acceptable limits; evaluation of SCUBA risks from medications (e.g., certain antihypertensives, anticoagulants); and general fitness and desire to dive.

Of course, the treating cardiologist must sign off on return to SCUBA.

Helpful?

Best of luck,

DocVikingo

This is educational only and does not constitute or imply a doctor-patient relationship. It is not medical advice to you or any other individual and should




franksjj

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Re: cardiac bypass
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2009, 19:35:11 UTC »
thanks doc
about as i expected
i'll have an echo cardiogram in a couple days and a long talk with cardiologist (i hope).  and in general, i'll get back to this thread with any further info or experiences that i think might help others in similar situations.
jeff

DocV

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Re: cardiac bypass
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2009, 11:07:28 UTC »
Thanks, Frank, it's how we learn.

DocV

franksjj

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Re: cardiac bypass
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2009, 02:31:32 UTC »
this is a short followup and update to my original messages.  my echocardiogram in early july indicated that i was back in the normal range of cardiac functioning.  at that point, the cardiologist said he had no objections to me diving related to my heart, but we agreed that my upper chest trauma from surgery needed a bit more time and exercise.   in the middle of august,  i dove in cozumel for the first time since my surgery in late april.  it felt wonderful to under water again.   i felt physically fine and had no problems.  at first the dive master had some qualms about letting me dive since i didn't have an official approval letter from my cardiologist --i did have an interoffice memo between my cardiologist and my internist indicating that he had no objections to me diving.  but then she relented and we dove.  still haven't totally recovered upper body strength and flexibility but it's pretty close.  will return to cozumel in early december and report back if there is anything more of interest.
jeff

DocV

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Re: cardiac bypass
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2009, 13:47:18 UTC »
Hi Jeff,

Sounds good.

Thanks for the update.

Dc

 

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