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Stress, depression or HCM?


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  • Stress, depression or HCM?

    Hi, All...
    Anyone have info or experiences they can relate concerning stress and the possible effects it has on HCM symptoms? Husband was diagnosed about a year 1/2 ago with HCM and even though his is "apical' he is very symptomatic.

    His HCM 'symptoms' - chest pain, SOB, etc...seem to be heightened lately and he tells me it's 'just stress'. (Mainly from his job)

    A lot of stress isn't good for ANYONE, but was just wondering how that affected HCM'ers.

    He's going through a tough time right now - he also feels that he is suffering from depression - headaches, low energy, irritable and also complains of "lack of concentration". (I have read posts from Lisa that depression is commonly a misdiagnosis of HCM.)

    He was doing well for quite some time up until about 2 months ago - he also told me that he had some 'strange feelings' in his chest; but it went away. Again, he chalks it up to "just stress".

    It has been almost a year since he saw Dr. Lever in Cleveland. He is scheduled to see his "local-yocal" cardiologist in a few weeks....my other question is: Should testing for HCM patients typically be done on a yearly basis?

    I'd appreciate your thoughts and advice.......


    ps..hope I 'posted' in the right place; still getting accustomed to these new boards.

  • #2
    Re: Stress, depression or HCM?

    Hi. I just want to comment on the stress issue. Stress can definitely make HCM symptoms appear to be worse than when there is no stress.


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


    • #3
      Re: Stress, depression or HCM?

      New symptoms or worsening symptoms are reason to check in with the cardiologist. Hubby knows he's not feeling well and the only way to know for sure is to have it checked out. If he minimizes his symptoms to the cardiologist, he may not be aware of how bothersome they really are. Best wishes, keep us posted. Linda


      • #4
        Re: Stress, depression or HCM?

        Dittos to what Reenie posted earlier.... stress can make HCM symptoms seem exaggerated from the usual. I find that to be the case with myself quite frequently and I, too, am an apical HCM guy. That being said, so far I have next to no symptoms probably 95% of the time.

        Good luck to you and your husband. Please keep us posted!
        Tom Mc.
        Apical HCM


        • #5
          Re: Stress, depression or HCM?

          Well I'd say that stress is a big part of the reason most of us are in the condition we're now in. I went hrough a very stressfull situation 2 wks ago, I went to the doc. I thought I had a 2nd. heart attack. I was suddenly much more short of breath and was dizzy alot. Just stress!
          If your husband is like most men (myself included) he will not tell you how bad he really feels, its the wifes job to drag it out of him,didn't you know that?????
          Good luck to both of you...Tom


          • #6
            Re: Stress, depression or HCM?

            Tom... You are so funny... and the only man I have ever seen make such a admission in public... your brave!

            Let me clear up a few things...Depression is a serious condition and can well be diagnosed in someone with HCM. It is however common for a person to recieve the diagnosis of depression when the symptoms are fatigue, pounding chest/palpitations and maybe dizziness. Many people say "I just do not have the energy to do things" and that is a key to look for depression.
            In the case someone has HCM and is feeling "depressed" I would first look to the heart of the matter Check the heart...and the medications with an HCM specialist.... then if symptoms continue seek help for the depression.

            Yes, you should have a check up once a year.

            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)