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mongo_jones Find out more about mongo_jones
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  • got the big one!

    so people,

    i know what it feels like to get the big shock. and what's more i know what it feels like to get it while fully conscious!

    first the background: we were on vacation in los angeles, staying with my wife's parents. they have some tenants (in the same house) who've been giving them a lot of trouble and we were trying to sort it out one day when one of the people started getting real nasty and a big argument erupted--i could feel myself getting excited (usually it takes me a long time to lose my temper but when i do, watch out!) and i could feel my heart beating a lot faster (adrenalin)--suddenly WHAPPO! i got that super-heavy hit on the funny-bone blank-out feeling, and got moved 6 inches forward. took me a few seconds to realize what had happened. on the whole i think it freaked the guy out more--he shut up right away (i should have taken the opportunity to shock him!)--and my wife as well. i called my doctor's office in boulder right away and they said to "stay out of stressful situations" and if it didn't fire again (in which case they'd hook up an appt. with a local tech) to wait till i got home to have it interrogated. well, this was a month ago almost and it hasn't fired again (or my heart felt funny at all) and our trip got lengthened unexpectedly, and so we only just got back--i go early next week to have it checked.

    i'm guessing (hoping?) that it did not fire because of vf (i didn't feel any of the things people are supposed to feel when they go into vf--no dizziness, no light-headedness, no blackouts) but because i got way too over-excited and my heart raced past the threshold for the big zap. in a few days i suppose i'll know. the good news is that (unless it turns out it misfired) that the bloody thing does what it is supposed to; the bad news is that (if it fired merely because i got too over-excited and not because i was in danger of vf) my battery life has probably gotten a lot lower now; then again, as those who know my problems with my implant know, this may also be a good thing.

    of course, i do hope that was the big shock. if not, and if there's another one that's bigger, i really want to be passed out if i ever get it! if it was the big shock, i am glad to be able to say that while it is not something i want to ever do for pleasure it is not as bad as i'd thought it would be--no pain, mostly a great deal of surprise (putting it mildly).

    i'll update once the medtronic folks have done with me.

    cheers!

    mongo

  • #2
    Re: got the big one!

    WOW!!
    I have my ICD since November 2000 and I've never been shocked. The main reason it took me so long to decide if I wanted it or not was fear of the "not knowing". I use to exercise daily, but now I am afraid to because of the possibility of getting 'shocked". I know it is suppose to save my life, but I'm afraid that when I feel it, the surprise will kill me...lol
    I have heard many people describe the feeling of the shock, but not as intense as yours.
    Keep in touch and let us know the outcome.
    Esther

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    • #3
      Re: got the big one!

      Wow! Glad it was there for you. Let us know what the Medtronics people have to say.

      Reenie
      Reenie

      ****************
      Husband has HCM.
      3 kids - ages 23, 21, & 19. All presently clear of HCM.

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      • #4
        Re: got the big one!

        Originally posted by Reenie
        Wow! Glad it was there for you. Let us know what the Medtronics people have to say.

        Reenie
        i expect/hope they will say what i think: it fired because my heart raced above the bpm level at which it is supposed to fire--not because i was in vf. from what i know if i was in vf i would have known it before i got the shock. there seem to be a whole range of levels at which people's icd's are set to fire (i think someone mentioned a level of 165 for them?)--i wonder if 188 might be too low of a threshold for me (my set range for vf is 188-500bpm). appt. is for wednesday--i'll report back.

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        • #5
          Re: got the big one!

          My husband only had his device for 45 days, and he got 3 big ones. Scared the crap out of both of us.

          We spent the weekend in the hospital (doctor on call told us to go if he got zapped more than once). Turns out it saved his life!

          I so love his doctors at the Cleveland Clinic.

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          • #6
            Re: got the big one!

            Hi Lena

            Your husband got 3 big ones the same day? Did it knock him on his butt? I was told if I receive a shock, I should call the Mayo Clinic immediately. What a lifesaver
            Esther

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            • #7
              Re: got the big one!

              Wow, Lena. What a story! I'm glad he had that ICD.

              Reenie
              Reenie

              ****************
              Husband has HCM.
              3 kids - ages 23, 21, & 19. All presently clear of HCM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: got the big one!

                It did knock him on his butt! Poor guy was actually sick all week with a bad cold, so that didn't help.

                Very good timing. He had a checkup at the Cleveland Clinic a few days later, and his doctors were very surprised. Their primary reason for implantation was family history of sudden cardiac death. We thought this would just be some extra "insurance."

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                • #9
                  Re: got the big one!

                  lena,
                  I would like to learn more about your husbands ICD discharge. Can you call the office or send me a PM as to when is a good time to chat.

                  Lisa
                  Knowledge is power ... Stay informed!
                  YOU can make a difference - all you have to do is try!

                  Dx age 12 current age 46 and counting!
                  lost: 5 family members to HCM (SCD, Stroke, CHF)
                  Others diagnosed living with HCM (or gene +) include - daughter, niece, nephew, cousin, sister and many many friends!
                  Therapy - ICD (implanted 97, 01, 04 and 11, medication
                  Currently not obstructed
                  Complications - unnecessary pacemaker and stroke (unrelated to each other)

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