What About Sex After Heart Valve Surgery?
By Adam Pick on September 1, 2007
During my recovery from aortic and pulmonary valve replacements, there were many memorable experiences. There were “highs” during my recovery – my engagement to Robyn. And, there were “lows” during my recovery – cardiac depression.
That said, one of the more memorable experiences dealt with sex after heart surgery.
As you would imagine, this is a a very common question when I chat with patients and caregivers about the recovery from cardiac procedures including heart valve repair and heart valve replacement. The question usually goes like this, “How long until I/we can have sex after heart surgery?”
During my recovery, I did muster up the uncomfortable courage to ask Nurse Carrie this exact question about sex after heart surgery. Carrie looked at me and said, “Can you walk up two flights of stairs?”
I nodded yes.
Carrie exclaimed, “You’re good to go sailor! It’s time for sex after heart surgery! I hereby give you permission to do the Wild Thing!”
I laughed out loud.
It was a classic moment that belonged in some sort of fantastic movie.
FYI, this conversation between Nurse Carrie and I happened about four weeks after my double valve replacement surgery. However, you should know that while this story is quite playful, there are a number of post-operative issues which may inhibit the patient’s desire to re-engage in sexual activity following surgery.
Keep on tickin!