I am new to this forum so I hope I am posting in the right place! I had a pericardial window 5 days ago and am home recovering.
My story began 2 years ago, (age 49) with a case of periocarditis. My internist sent me to a cardiologist who diagnosed w/echo. The ibuprofen/10 day treatment worked and I was fine. Then, last Dec., I had a bad case of bronchitis. Two weeks later I had weird shortness of breath. More like "air hunger" and sometimes the shortness felt like it was in my throat. I self diagnosed with "anxiety" but he said it was now a pericardial effusion. Small though. Two rounds of Ibuprofen didn't help. He wanted to do the Window a few months ago but I kept dragging my feet. Finally, I got a second opinion who agreed with the window treatment. Meanwhile, blood work all turned up negative for Lupus, RA, and other issues.
I had the surgery Friday and the chest tube removed on Monday. Which, I have to say was the most SHOCKING pain I've ever imagined. Worse than natural childbirth! The pathology reports were all negative so the final verdict is that it was an unknown virus that caused the effusion and I should be fine now.
Here's a few post op questions for anyone who has had the Window. (left side video assisted)
I am having night sweats, day sweats, chills, is that normal? It's not hormonal since I take estrogen.
Pain is significant but getting better. How long will that last?
Can the effusions come back? I don't understand that unless the window somehow seals over?
I cancelled an appointment with a very well renowned Rheumy when they said the path was all clear. I hope that wasn't a mistake.
Thanks in advance for any thoughts.
This is such a weird/unpredictable condition. I don't know ANYONE who has had this.