Recovery Blog - Page 2

By Adam Pick

Surgeon Q&A: What Percent of Patients Get Pacemakers After Heart Valve Surgery?

By Adam Pick on April 14, 2016

I recently received a great question from Lori about pacemakers and heart valve surgery. Lori posted at our Facebook page, “Adam, what percentage of patients need pacemakers after valve surgery?”

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The Patient Mind: Before, During & After Heart Surgery

By Adam Pick on February 24, 2016

As many patients and families will tell you… The heart valve surgery process can be an emotional roller coaster. As I personally experienced, there can be wonderful highs (waking up with a fixed heart) and there can be unexpected lows (cardiac depression).

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Cardiologist Q&A: What Should You Know About Atrioventricular Block After Heart Valve Surgery?

By Adam Pick on December 9, 2015

I received several great questions during our ‘Ask Me Anything’ video series at the Heart Valve Summit. For example, Pamela posted at our Facebook page, “Can you talk about Atrioventricular Block after heart valve surgery?”

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“What About Sternal Nonunion After Heart Surgery?” asks John

By Adam Pick on February 24, 2015

I just received a great question from John about sternal clicking after open heart surgery.

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Patient Q&A: How Fast Does A Heart Surgery Incision Heal?

By Adam Pick on February 5, 2015

I often receive the question, “How fast does a heart surgery incision heal?”

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4 Hobbies to Make You Happy After Surgery

By Adam Pick on November 20, 2014

Now is the time to maximize your longevity and invigorate your vitality by finding activities that nourish your soul. As you recover from surgery, ask yourself what you’ve always wanted to do or what you want to do more of. There are plenty of hobbies that don’t require too much physical exertion and can be great for stimulating your mind.

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Tai Chi: The Ideal Exercise Option for Heart Surgery Patients?

By Adam Pick on September 3, 2014

Doctors perform more than five million heart surgeries every year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These range from stent insertions and open-heart procedures to angioplasties and other cardiovascular procedures. As part of these patients’ recovery plans, many physicians recommend some type of light exercise program. If you’ve undergone heart-related surgery and are looking for a way to be active, tai chi is a terrific option.

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“What About Exercising After Heart Valve Surgery?” Asks Brent

By Adam Pick on July 9, 2014

I received a great question from Brent about exercise after heart valve surgery. In his email, Brent writes to me, “Adam – I’m an active guy who likes to play racquetball, swim, hike, bike, golf and bowl. I was diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis and recently told I need surgery. I feel pretty darn good at 66 even though I do get winded a little easier these days. How long after surgery can I do all the things I’m doing now? Is there anything I should do after surgery to help me exercise sooner than later? Thanks, Brent”

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“What About Beta Blockers After Mitral Valve Repair Surgery?” Asks John

By Adam Pick on June 3, 2014

As a follow-up to our recent discussion about Metoprolol, I received this question from John about beta blockers and mitral valve repair surgery. In his email, John writes, “Is there any convincing evidence for using beta blockers following mitral valve surgery? What are the advantages? Or, is this just protocol? Thanks! John”

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“What About Metoprolol After Heart Valve Surgery?” Asks Vielka

By Adam Pick on May 27, 2014

I just received several great questions from Vielka about the use of Metoprolol after heart valve surgery. In her email, Vielka was interested to learn “Why patients take Metoprolol after heart valve surgery?”, “Is it common for patients to take Metoprolol after the operation?” and “How long do patients stay on Metoprolol after surgery?”

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Guest Blog: “What the Incision Shield Meant to Me” by Dennis

By Adam Pick on May 1, 2014

Years ago, I learned about a unique product designed to help patients take care of their incision after surgery. The device, called the Incision Shield, protects your incision against unwanted pressure and ensures that no materials (e.g. clothing or linens) rub up against your scar. To see what patients thought about the Incision Shield, I gave away 30 Incision Shields to the members of our community. The response was fantastic.

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Cleansing Your Body, Mind & Home After Heart Valve Surgery

By Adam Pick on April 15, 2014

You’re home from the hospital. You have a fixed heart.

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Getting Ready for Your Heart Surgery Recovery at Home

By Adam Pick on February 11, 2014

More than half a million heart surgeries are done each year in the United States, according to the National Institute of Health. This once scary surgery is becoming more-and-more commonplace, and with increasing success rates, more people are recovering at home after their hospital stay. However, please, please, please get your home ready BEFORE you go in for surgery to make sure your are prepared. Here are a few suggestions for you, your family and friends.

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When You Can’t Be There: Tips for Providing Long Distance Care & Support

By Adam Pick on December 17, 2013

After an initial hospital stay, the recovery from heart valve surgery varies. If you have a close friend or relative who’s undergoing surgery, you want to be there to support him or her. But, in some cases, distance makes being by a person’s hospital bed impossible. While you might not be able to be right there for someone, you can still take care of him. The National Institute on Aging estimates there are about 7 million long distance caregivers in the country — you’re not alone.

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Traveling Timeline After Heart Surgery

By Adam Pick on November 25, 2013

Travel during the holiday season is expected to increase this year, up from the 93.3 million travelers who ventured at least 50 miles away from home this time last year, according to AAA. Although many medical professionals recommend avoiding traveling during recovery, it seems practically unavoidable during this family-centered season. However, just because you might be going against this advice, it doesn’t mean you should throw all caution to the wind. These tips break down some important considerations for traveling after heart surgery.

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Caregiving After Heart Surgery: 5 Tips for a Speedy, Healthy Recovery

By Adam Pick on October 30, 2013

Going in for surgery is not easy, but it can be equally challenging on the caregiver as on the patient. Post-op care requires patience, compassion and a bit of basic medical knowledge to smooth your loved one’s journey after heart surgery.

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6 Tips To Prepare You For Heart Surgery Recovery

By Adam Pick on September 3, 2013

After heart surgery, you’ll likely go home with a list of dos and don’ts from your physician. Preparing for surgery beforehand will also help the recovery process go more smoothly and comfortably.

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Guest Blog: Jim Talks About Pain, Cardiac Rehab & Mowing Lawns After Aortic Valve Replacement Surgery

By Adam Pick on August 8, 2013

A common question that patients have before cardiac surgery is, “How much pain will I experience?”

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5 Things to Do While Your Heart Mends (After Surgery)

By Adam Pick on July 29, 2013

Keeping yourself entertained without leaving the limited vicinity of your hospital or home can be a challenge during the recovery from cardiac surgery. Searching for a solution can be a source of mental stimulation in and of itself. Although it might be tempting to spend your days immersed in soap operas or taking long cat naps, you’ll find that you feel more fulfilled and proud at the end of the day when you spend your time productively. So, if you want your recovery time to go by faster, preoccupy yourself with these five fun projects you can do while recovering from heart surgery.

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“What About Dementia and Delirium After Heart Valve Surgery?” Asks a Concerned Wife

By Adam Pick on February 11, 2013

As many patients will tell you… Waking up in an intensive care unit (ICU) after heart valve surgery can be a very dislocating experience. Personally, I remember thinking, “Holy moly! What the heck just happened? What are all those noises? And, why is this massive tube stuck down my throat?”

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