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Old 02-21-2016, 11:30 PM   #21
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My doctor got an EKG machine and a treadmill and started putting many of his patients on there when doing routine physicals. His practice's heart attack rates dropped dramatically as he discovered potential problems prior to patients having full blown heart attacks.

Stage 1 and Stage 2 on the treadmill, I was okay. When he kicked the treadmill in high gear, my heart had some "backfires"--for a lack of proper terminology. I was referred to a cardiologist for a thru the wrist procedure, and they found a small blockage on the backside of my heart.

I go for an EKG yearly, and they do a nuclear stress test every other year. I've had one more arteriogram and am stable. And as a Type II diabetic, the cardiologist says the chances I'll need open heart surgery eventually is pretty strong--better than 50-50. Genetics is tough to get around.
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Old 02-21-2016, 11:56 PM   #22
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Sorry to bump an old thread. Was at the Dr. office recently, I asked about so called "Silent" heart attacks. Was shocked when my Doc told me about 50% of heart attacks fall into that definition.
I too was surprised to learn that fact. My next door neighbors were 2 cardiologists in their 50's. The husband would often go jogging in the morning around the block before starting work. One day he collapsed in the street and could not be revived. His wife later told me he had absolutely no prior symptoms of cardiac disease. She also told me that 50% of fatal MIs present like this.
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Old 02-22-2016, 06:52 AM   #23
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I've been on a statin for many years, and have noticed others that popoo'd statins, but reading this thread makes me think it may not be such a bad thing to be on, unless you are getting side effects.
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Old 02-22-2016, 02:11 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Lakewood90712 View Post
Sorry to bump an old thread. Was at the Dr. office recently, I asked about so called "Silent" heart attacks. Was shocked when my Doc told me about 50% of heart attacks fall into that definition.
Yea, I remember one doc who said for a good number of people the first sign of a heart problem is death....

Kinda puts it in perspective....
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Old 02-22-2016, 02:12 PM   #25
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^^ that's what I was told when I had my pulmonary embolism
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Old 02-22-2016, 05:10 PM   #26
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So far mentioned:

ECG
EKG
Echocardiogram
Treadmill Stress Test
Nuclear Stress Test
Nonnuclear Stress Test
Stress Echo
Ultrasound
Heart Scan
Calcium Heart Scan
True Positive
True Negative
False Positive
False Negative
EBT scanner
Angiogram
Heart Murmur
MET Level
Heart Catheterization
"Silent" Heart Attack
Arteriogram
Cardiac Disease
Pulonary embolism

... to which I'll add
AFIB
Cardiovascular
Angina
Cardiac computerized tomography (CT) scan
Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI
Peripheral artery disease
Sudden cardiac arrest
Claudication
Stroke
Aneurism
Heart Failure

This is just the beginning. Wondering who can define all of the terms,
and tell which ones are essentially the same.

In my CCRC, almost everyone has been touched by or dealing with heart treatments or conditions. Understanding the terms and estimating the risk is another story.

The risk "percentage" is part of the newer "tech" analyses that vary by the
source of the study. IMHO, a work in progress.
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Old 02-22-2016, 05:12 PM   #27
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you forgot DVT - deep vein thrombosis
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Old 02-22-2016, 05:29 PM   #28
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You forgot heart transplant, of which my BIL had done successfully about a year ago at age 74.
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Stress Echo ok, substantial coronary artery blockage still possible ?
Old 02-22-2016, 05:50 PM   #29
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Stress Echo ok, substantial coronary artery blockage still possible ?

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Originally Posted by DFW_M5 View Post
I've been on a statin for many years, and have noticed others that popoo'd statins, but reading this thread makes me think it may not be such a bad thing to be on, unless you are getting side effects.

I was taking Simcor (simvastatin and niacin) for a number of years. I have familial hypertriglyeride levels, and all lipid numbers improved, though levels were still "iffy".

I received notice from my insurance-provided online pharmacy a few months back, stating that Simcor was being discontinued by the manufacturer. Given that I was nearly out of drugs, that the prescription was about to expire, and that it was time for the yearly physical anyway, it was off to see the GP for me.

Turns out that niacin had no effect on mortality, so it was discontinued. I've been somewhat skeptical of the lipid hypothesis myself, so I engaged the doc in that conversation.

Now, not being trained in things medical, I can't explain the mechanism all that well, but various studies have shown a statistically-significant reduction in mortality from taking statins. Statins also reduce (cause regression of) plaque deposits, and have a preventative effect of reducing plaque ruptures. It appears the anti-inflammatory effect is the culprit, and not necessarily the lowering of "cholesterol", per se.

My doctor was adamant that statins were indeed effective, and related the reduction in frequency of open-heart/bypass surgeries from his early career in the late 60s to the present day.

He also mentioned that periodontal disease was another highly correlative factor in overall mortality from cardiovascular events...

I'm "happily" taking my simvastation, sans niacin and the gawd-awful flushing it caused. Have also redoubled my flossing effort.

Apologies to any medical professionals for any butchering of medical terminology...
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Old 02-22-2016, 07:56 PM   #30
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You forgot heart transplant...
Can we add broken heart to the list?
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Old 02-23-2016, 01:52 AM   #31
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A 55-year old man I indirectly knew felt tired and told his secretary he was going home early. He never made it home, and it took a few days before they found him dead in his car in a parking lot, where he pulled over and died. I did not know the result of the autopsy, but a heard attack would be most likely. He was a full colonel in the USAF, so would have had regular health checkups.
If he was on flight status or similar yes he would have regular checkups, most officers in the air force probably only get the same checkup everybody else gets. My father was on flight status for over 20 years, former AF military brat and ex navy active speaking.
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Old 02-23-2016, 07:53 AM   #32
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Re: HFWR post #29:
I've been on the medication merry-go-round ever since 1989 when I started with a series of different cholesterol lowering drugs, then switched to Lipitor when it came out in 1996 or 1997.
It worked well until I grew older, and in 2006, began to suffer from severe joint and muscle aches.

A little background... back in 1990, the cholesterol "thing" was just beginning. My cholesterol panel was high. The doctors were still experimenting, and I guess so, to this day.

Here's an older (2011) article about the history of and changes to.. the way theories have changed.
Cholesterol and Controversy: Past, present and Future - Scientific American Blog Network

There's another part of this medication story, and that's triglycerides. In my case, off the scale, with a reading of 500 (but the doctor said they were likely over 1000) that was in 2004. cholesterol LDL 300, HDL 100. Went on to Tricor... (fenofibrate). That dropped all levels to high, but not dangerous.

That would seem to be the answer... and I suppose it was, but there were a few other things that came into play... Diet changes... not intentional, but less eating out, and just naturally, smaller amounts of food. That and a loss of muscle (age... when I reached the early 70's, and about 10 lbs. of weight).
Last year, all of my triglycerides and cholesterol readings are within or lower than "normal".

Now, all of that aside... I think that we are still in a learning process. yes, on lowering plaque, but as far as long term effects of the medications, and alternative and new treatments and drugs... still a work in progress. Different doctors, different opinions. Some insist on getting levels to normal range, others tempering that with judgement. Some current studies are showing varying long term effects of more aggressive medications.

In my own case, three different doctors, with three different opinions. No strong contradictions, but indicative of that "work in progress".
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:11 AM   #33
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I have been wondering about this lately (sudden cardiac death with no prior indication or symptoms). I had a bout of SVT last spring that required emergency cardioversion. I have since had an ablation.

My ekg, echo and stress test all indicate my heart is healthy. I haven't had my blood lipids checked in a while but the last time I did they were very good. But that episode of SVT was so scary: I was sure my heart was doing it's last crazy dance before calling it quits.

I can't remember exactly when but a few years ago my husband and I saw a video lecture given by Dr Esselstyn about reversing heart disease and making yourself "heart attack proof". We both have heart disease in at least one of our parents so we cant count on good genes. We were already on a fairly healthy diet but the talk persuaded us to shift to whole food, plant based. We both felt very good on this and weight management was a breeze.

Dr Esselstyn says something like "moderation kills" and unfortunately that was my downfall: I started adding unhealthy food back in until I realized my diet was no longer whole food plant based. So as of this week I am back on the plant based whole food wagon. I can't explain why I've struggled with it for the past 9 months.

My impression is that if you want to be sure you don't die of a heart attack, you follow the advice of someone like Pritikin, Esselstyn or Ornish.
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:18 AM   #34
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At one time I tried to convince my Dr to take me off simvastatin. He said no way considering you have diabetes and high blood pressure (both very well controlled thru the meds/diet/exercise), and a family history of heart disease. Anyway, my target LDL is < 70 because of those factors. Fortunately, I am not getting any side effects from either simvastatin or lisinopril, although I do believe simvastatin also lowers HDL which is not desirable.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:49 AM   #35
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various studies have shown a statistically-significant reduction in mortality from taking statins.
Apart from an extremely small effect in those who have already suffered one heart attack, you might want to try finding some of those studies. Good luck.
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Old 02-23-2016, 12:12 PM   #36
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Apart from an extremely small effect in those who have already suffered one heart attack, you might want to try finding some of those studies. Good luck.

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/445150

http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/s...s-201507168142

http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/5/9/e007118.full

https://people.csail.mit.edu/seneff/...ally_work.html

Etc.
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Old 02-23-2016, 12:14 PM   #37
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Can we add broken heart to the list?
my mom had "broken heart syndrome" a few years ago

it basically mirrors a heart attack but isn't one - she recovered
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Old 02-23-2016, 05:16 PM   #38
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I know a good doctor that said most of the studies were done on men so don't apply to women and that they are greatly over prescribed and that the overall good they do is not out weighed by the harm.
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Old 02-23-2016, 07:05 PM   #39
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I know a good doctor that said most of the studies were done on men so don't apply to women and that they are greatly over prescribed and that the overall good they do is not out weighed by the harm.
Was the good doctor out of breath when he finished saying the above?
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:15 PM   #40
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I had a heart scare a few years back. When it was all said and done, it turned out I had a benign arrhythmia that had gotten out of hand. "Safe but disturbing" is the best way to describe it.

I spent a night wired up like a christmas tree listening the EKG screeching every couple minutes because my effective heart rate would dive down into the 30s.

Between my nerves and a very young on-call cardiologist's nerves, he decided to skip the planned stress test and ordered a cardiac catheter where they go in through a big artery in your leg and run a wire up into your heart to look around. It was 3 in the morning and suddenly I'm signing paperwork giving them permission to put in stents if needed. Pretty stressful.

All's well that ends well and in retrospect I'm glad they did the invasive cath procedure because they could tell me to a certainty that my arteries were perfectly clean and that what was happening wasn't dangerous.

There was also some humor value when I woke up from the anesthesia to find a 200lb male orderly leaning with all his weight on my groin to get to bleeding from the incision to stop...I was stoned but not that stoned...yikes did that hurt!
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