Adam's Heart Valve Surgery Blog

Get the latest news, patient advice and insights about heart valve surgery from Adam Pick, patient, author and website founder

4 Cutting Edge Apps to Monitor Your Heart Health

Not that long ago, people who underwent heart valve or other cardiovascular surgery had to wait until their next doctor’s appointment to monitor their heart health. Granted, you probably could have purchased an at-home blood pressure monitor or visited the local pharmacy… But, that was about the extent of it.

Heart Health Apps For Your iPhone

Now, thanks to some pretty amazing apps and other smartphone-related technology, your mobile phone can help you do much more than text or make calls. As Harvard Health Publications notes, hundreds of heart health apps are now available, and some of them use the impressive technology inside the phones to allow people to take charge of their cardiovascular health. Consider the following four examples:

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“What About Atrial Fibrillation & Aortic Valve Disease?” asks Robert

As we learned in our recent post, Atrial Fibrillation: 5 Facts Valve Patients Should Know, it is very important for patients with valvular disorders to learn why and how atrial fibrillation (AFib) can impact the functioning of their heart and their surgical treatment. Shortly after posting, I received an excellent follow-up question from Robert about the potential connection between AFib and, specifically, the aortic valve. In Robert’s comment, he writes, “Adam, Was there any discussion of relationships between AFib and aortic valves, valve regurgitation, etc.?”

Normal and Abnormal Heart Rhythm

To provide Robert an expert opinion, I contacted Dr. Niv Ad, who is the Chief of Cardiac Surgery at Inova Heart & Vascular Institute. As you might know, Dr. Ad is an AFib specialist who has published many research papers on this subject. In addition, Dr. Ad is an incredible patient advocate who hosts an annual AFib Patient Reunion which I’ve been fortunate to attend in the past.

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Surgeon Q&A: “Why Do I Need An Angiogram Before Heart Valve Surgery?” asks John

I recently saw a great question posted at John’s heart valve journal. So you know, John is scheduled for aortic valve surgery on October 17. In his post, John asked, “Since I already know that I have aortic valve stenosis — and need it replaced — why do I have to go through an angiogram?”

Angiograms Before Heart SurgeryAngiogram Image, John & His Wife

I wanted to provide John an expert response to his question. So, I contacted Dr. John Grehan, a heart valve specialist from United Healthcare in St. Paul, Minnesota.

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Video Guide: Introducing Heart Valve Journals 2.0

In connection with the recent relaunch of HeartValveSurgery.com, I am excited to introduce you to Heart Valve Journals 2.0. As you may know, Heart Valve Journals (HVJ) is a special online community of patients, their family members and friends. We started HVJ, in 2009, to help patients meet and learn from each other. Since then, HVJ has helped 1000’s of people — from diagnosis through recovery.

To help you learn about all the new features and capabilities of Heart Valve Journals community, I made this video guide.

Again, I want to thank all the community members for their feedback, support, encouragement and… criticism.

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Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month: 5 Facts Heart Valve Patients Should Know

If you didn’t know, September is National Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month. As many patients in our community have heart valve disease and atrial fibrillation, here are 5 important facts about atrial fibrillation.

Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month

 

1. What is Atrial Fibrillation?

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia encountered in clinical practice. Its incidence increases with age and the presence of structural heart disease – like valvular disorders including mitral regurgitation. Stroke and heart failure may result patients with atrial fibrillation.

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