Living with a Mechanical Heart Valve: Click.Tick.Thump. Love It!

Support Group for Mechanical & Artificial Heart Valve Surgery & Using Warfarin

Michaella Gurden
  • Female
  • Essex
  • United Kingdom
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My story
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I am 39 year old female who had a mechanical aortic valve fitted in February this year. I went to the doctor on numerous occasions with breathlessness and tightness in the chest, but as i am an…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Martina May 19, 2013.

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I am 39 year old female who had a mechanical aortic valve fitted in February this year. I went to the doctor on numerous occasions with breathlessness and tightness in the chest, but as i am an asthmatic it was always put down to this, and i was given steroids and told to rest, however as soon as I went back to work, the breathlessness and tight chest started up again, it was finally picked up when I saw a locum doctor who said he heard a murmur and sent me for a ultra sound, from this stage onwards everything happened so quickly, i was taken into hospital where I had an MRI scan and was told it was bad and needed a replacement valve. This was all diagnosed October last year, so all happened very quickly. I decided to go with the St Jude Mechanical valve due to my age and the surgeon advised this was the best one to use as would last me my life and not need replacement. It is now 7 weeks since my surgery and I can already feel a difference, no more tightness in the chest and I am gradually building my strength back up, i start my rehabilitation on Thursday this week. I do have to go to the hospital every week at the moment to have blood taken for my INR levels and take Walfarin every day which will be for life.
I am still trying to adjust to the ticking sound, which i can really hear all the time, especially at night, however my other half has advised he can not hear it at all unless i get very close. I can feel it when I breathe in deeply, like a thumping in my chest, it does feel like I do have a foreign object inside me at the moment. I would like to hear how other people are dealing with the valve and what advise they can give, how do you feel about the scar?

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