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I am tired of being tired! Any advice?


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Shy Heart
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  • I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

    I am a 46 yr old that has absolutely no energy! The sad part is I have never been a very energic person but now this is rediculous!! I was diagnosed with obstructive HCM approximately 1 year ago. I was put on Toprol XL for about 6 months. The toprol did a great job with my palpations but zapped me as far as energy. I complained so I was traded to Cardizem CD & it does okay at controlling my palpations but I am still tired. I have an appointment with my cardiologist in 2 weeks and I will discuss this with him but I know he's tired of trying to make me 'untired'.
    I have a stressful job & I work 45 to 50 hrs a week. I love my family but I am almost too tired to even talk to them. I enjoy gardening but my yard looks horrible & I'm too tired to care! Needless to say the house is a disaster too!
    Any advice or comments would be GREATLY appreciated.

    Thanks, sheryl from SC

  • #2
    Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

    Well, unfortunately, a fairly large number of us share your complaint---- the condition makes us tired and the medicines we take seem to compound the exhaustion.

    I moved from toprol to atenol and less mg seemed to do more. Also, this pill costs less-----------

    Have you made time for some exercise? I know it is hard to find the time and energy, but if you don't get some exercise, your condition will worsen and you'll have less energy. At least try to get in some walking 3 times a week-----------


    • #3
      Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

      Fatigue has been a major complaint of mine. As Liona points out, the disease makes you tired, but then the medications we take make you even more so.

      But there may be a few things you can do:

      1. I've switched beta blockers. Your doctor may be able to find one that works for you but which doesn't have such serious fatigue side effects.

      2. The thing that really helped me was reducing the beta blocker dosage. I was on Inderal 40 mg twice a day, and I talked the doctor into reducing the dose to 20 mg twice a day. Within a week I felt as though someone had lifted a dark curtain from my life. Obviously, work closely with your doctor on this and don't fool with dosages on your own.

      3. Have you tried a low-carb diet? Carbs break down as sugars, sugars cause your body to produce insulin, and insulin rushes create drowsiness. I did Atkins a few years ago to lose weight but I've stayed on a sort of modified Atkins diet because it makes me feel so much better. A number of HCM people seem to really benefit from low carb eating.

      4. If you aren't so tired in the morning when you first get out of bed, get out for a short walk. You'd be amazed how much of a boost 15-30 minutes of walking can give you.

      5. Do you smoke? If so, quit. You'll get an oxygen boost that will create more alertness and energy.

      6. Do you drink? If you do, quit that as well. Alcohol digests as sugar and causes the same insulin roller coaster as mentioned above. How many times have you seen someone drink too much and then nod off? Hmmmm.

      7. How's your weight? If you're overweight, dropping some pounds will take a load off your heart and make you feel a lot better. Good advice for anyone, but a real necessity for anyone with HCM/HCOM.


      Here's something else I got from your post; you're middled-aged (46), you work too damn hard at a job that is very stressful, you've got a full plate of family responsibilities, you're feeling guilty that you're not working harder at home (gardening and housekeeping) and you've recently been diagnosed with a very serious medical condition.

      I know these choices are hard, but you may need to make some adjustments in your life that acknowledge the fact that you have HCOM. Maybe you need a different job; maybe your boss needs a better understanding of your medical condition; maybe some other family members need to pick up on some of the housekeeping chores. Maybe you need to learn to live with an unkempt lawn.

      Maybe you need to take a nap once in a while! (What a great idea -- please excuse me for 30 minutes or so...)



      • #4
        Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?


        I don't have a lot to add except what Bill says at the end.
        take a NAP once a while. When I'm really tired (most days), when I get home I go straigt up stairs, get in the bed for about 30-45 minutes and wake up a new person. I also have a high stress job, no kids (yet) and a big yard that needs a lot of attention. Thank god that my wife (Christina) has taken a lot off my plate and takes care of most of the stuff, so I have time to nap.

        Hopefully after my myectomy (Oct 21) I will feel better (after I recover) and will be able to get back into things.

        Take care and have a good nap!


        • #5
          Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

          WOW Bill... that was a great responce.
          I will add a few thoughts. We all must understand that we all have limits...we all have to make a choice as to WHERE our energy must go... With HCM our energy level may not be as high as others and therefore we must make a choice as to where to spend our energy and something must "give" ...either work, home or play...

          it is not always easy and you must think about what is in YOUR best interest.

          Be well,
          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)


          • #6
            Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

            Sheryl, I'm amazed at how much you are able to keep up with. That's a long work wk for anyone. Great advice from all who posted. Good luck with deciding where you can decrease responsibilities! HCM really does show itself in energy levels, or lack of. Hope you find improvement with the suggestions. Linda


            • #7
              Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

              My husband is having similar symptoms....
              He does no tolerate high dosis of betta-blockers or anty-arrythmics so in order to help him and me.....
              We learned how to relax - a new way of resting - both of us having hard jobs for long ours and living in a crazy country.
              We learned about respiratory exercises, meditation and reiki.
              They all help to relax without changing your life style.
              Also drinking a lot of water (no coffe... ) helps.
              Hope you will feel better soon.
              All the advices you got are very important.

              Wishes for healh, peace and love!

              Daniela E-H, Mother to Matan-Ben (13 years old) who had his AICD implantation (29/03/04) and Myectomy (14/12/08) and Noga (4 years old) not affected
              Haifa - Israel.


              • #8
                Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?



                • #9
                  Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

                  WOW! What great responses/suggestions!

                  You are correct, I feel that I do work too many hours. Old habits are hard to break. By the way, it is Wednesday night at 11:20pm, I'm here by myself installing computer software and I have to be back here at 8:00 in the morning. I've worked here for 16 years and have always tried to give 110%. Guess, I'm having a hard time realizing I do have a medical condition and I'm not just lazy. By the way, thought you would get a kick out of this-- I work in a family practice physician's office. So much for understanding......

                  I am so glad your responses pointed out the obvious. I do need to back up and make some changes in my life. I do not exercise and I am overweight so I need to work on these things. Thank goodness I don't drink nor smoke so I'm okay there!

                  You all have touched me with your responses! It is so nice to discuss these issues with such wonderful people that understand.

                  Thanks again,


                  • #10
                    Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

                    Dear Sheryl,

                    I spent 3 years as the Help Desk Manager for a 1,000 person firm. I had 2 employees. There were other MIS people, but the official Help Desk was the 3 of us. People told me for two years to quit that job, but I enjoyed it for the most part and had fought hard to get where I was.

                    Then I went into atrial fibrillation and had a stroke when they cardioverted me.

                    I quit my job a few months later and found another career (writing) that I've always loved but didn't think I could do (but I didn't think I could get into computers either, so there *grin*). I'm not saying you have to make this big of a change, but letting you know it can be done.

                    Order Lisa's book and the HCM doctor's packet so you can educate your office on HCM and let them know that you will be going home at 6pm from now on. Because you will, right?

                    take care,



                    • #11
                      Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?


                      I struggle constantly with adjusting to change. Like most people, I want to keep doing the same things I've always done, but at the same time I want different results. Intellectually I know how dumb that is, but the human psyche is REALLY resistant to change. Mine certainly is, anyway.

                      But I think learning to adjust to change is one of the reasons God put us here. So, in a weird sort of way, I view my HCM as a blessing.



                      • #12
                        Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

                        Dear Bill,

                        So do I!!! I know that in my teens and twenties, the knowledge of how fragile my heart is kept me from drinking excessively (except for a few times) and almost completely away from drugs. I have met incredible people; I've had the opportunity to help people through scary medical stuff, and I appreciate that I have to live for right now and be grateful I'm here. I'm not always appreciative of the fact that I'm still here, but I try. And my strength inspires others.

                        Everything in life is an opportunity to be kind, grateful, or graceful.



                        • #13
                          Re: I am tired of being tired! Any advice?

                          I'd like to say that walking really does good. That's like a paradox but after you take some exercises but not physically tiring, ask your doctor which are allowed to you and you'll feel better. When people are doing sports their body produces a special hormone serotonin that gives us feeling of happiness.. at least that's something we can do it's better then knowing you can't do anything!


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