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About the Author


dcc 52 yrs..Diagnosed w/murmur @ birth..Diagnosed 1998 w/HOCM..Obstruction currently controlled by meds. Adopted. Two adult children..36 & 23 HCM free. Pacemaker dependent 10/10..ICD 3/11..Atenonol..Norpace..Coumidin..Lasix..AV Node ablation and Pulminary Vein Ablation. VT's. NSVT, persistant Afib, severe concentric LVH, Aortic Valve Sclerosis, HBP, Stage 3/C HF... Find out more about dcc
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  • Chf

    Hi...I am in congestive heart failure..thinking my severe fluid/sodium intake is causing lightheadness, dizzy, black spots in eyes and sometimes shaky and weak. My BP is also dipping when I stand. mine tends to be high. I took it at the Dr's office advise. Could be both. Then you call and report and they make you feel like an idiot..fix me...easy. Not what do I want to do..what should I do or do you want me to do !! If I knew..I wouldnt have called. Then something serious is wrong and do you get an I am sorry..or when they set your ICD/pacer wrong and you feel much same..NO !! Sometimes the worst part of this disease is dealing with the Dr's staff. I just had to vent..but any suggestions are def welcome..Have a great night !! Thank you !! Teri

  • #2
    Re: Chf

    Hello Terri,

    I'm not a doctor but someone who has dealt with heart disease since 2009 including CHF. For my condition, the doctors subscribed a day-to-day coping plan for CHF which was to take diuretics (Lasix) and to reduce fluid and sodium intake "big time."
    My doctors ordered me to take in no more than a 2 liter bottle of fluid per day and no more than 2000 mg / day of sodium per day. 2 liters of water is the same as 4 normally sized bottled waters. That's right, ONLY 4 bottled waters per 24 hours. I would "budget" my sodium intake as follows: breakfast 500 mg, lunch 500 mg and dinner 1500 mg.
    One with CHF must start reading labels carefully because almost all foods contain some sodium. For example, a slice of bread (135mg), an egg (65mg), cup of milk (130 mg), cup of cereal (165mg) and a cup of OJ (2 mg). So, a breakfast for someone with CHF may be limited to a cup of cereal, milk, toast and OJ (165+130+135+2) = 432. I found the only low sodium cereals in the store are made by a company called Kashi.
    In general, breads, packaged meats and cheeses are not your friend. Believe it or not, fresh red meat is usually low in sodium. A dinner of a lean cut of meat (filet) plus a baked potato (plain) is pretty low in sodium. Most sauces (ketchup, soy sauce, BBQ, etc) must go. Oh, and the salt shakers must be locked up or thrown away.
    The BIGGEST challenge is sticking to your doctors orders: CHF will give you good days and challenging days, that is you may start feeling better (not so tired and winded for example) and you'll be inclined, like me, to think it will be alright to dive into a pepperoni pizza! But, not sticking to the diet will usually catch up with you in a few days and you start feeling winded again.
    I hope I haven't depressed you but given you some things to research and talk with your doctor's about. Again, my plan was right for my condition, you should follow you doctor's orders - they do know best.

    You can get along with CHF, trust me, it just takes a lot of discipline.

    Psalm 20,

    A/V Heart Block 2009
    Permanent Pacer 2009
    Dx non-obs HCM CCF 2011
    CRT-D 2011
    Listed for H/T UAB 2011
    Dx Cardiac Sarcoidosis 2012
    Heart Transplant UAB 2012


    • #3
      Re: Chf

      Hi Teri,
      Sorry you're going through this! It sounds as though there are two issues - dealing with your CHF, and dealing with your doctor's office. No need to apologize about venting -- that's one of the things this board is great for!

      OK, having vented, you still have to deal with the CHF. There are a number of things that are often recommended for it, including diuretics, wearing compression hose, elevating your legs and taking it easy, and restricting sodium intake? Are you doing some of these? The idea, generally, is to get rid of some of the built-up fluid, and reduce your BP. Is your BP currently high?

      Any progress on getting an appointment at JHU? I ask because they will certainly be interested in seeing that your heart failure is treated too!

      Myectomy on Feb. 5, 2007.


      • #4
        Re: Chf

        Hi Steve and Gordon, Thank you's. I following 6 cup/1000 mg sodium..my BP does tend to run high..but lowering..feel better if the dips in BP stop. Nurse Prac called..cut back on Atenonol..hopefully see improvement by tomm. Re JHU..there will be a replacement on the 17th..I will try weeks end. Making progress..even if in small increments. The filet sounds terrific..as does the pepperoni pizza lol...thank you's again..have a great afternoon !! Teri


        • #5
          Re: Chf

          Hope you have a better weekend!
          Diagnosed @ 48
          Saw Dr. Michael Debakey @ age 5 - "He's fine, just a little noisy"
          Father to 3 boys 22, 25, 29 (all currently clear - pending genetics)
          AICD - Valentines Day '08, Spark Plug replaced 11/14
          After much research, I had a Myectomy @ Mayo for my 50th Birthday '08
          Quietly going insane . . .


          • #6
            Re: Chf

            I slept Marc..dehydrated..this doesnt feel so very well. One extreme to another??!! Hope your weekend was a great one tho !! Enjoy your afternoon !! Thank you