Confusing symptoms: Percarditis? Constrictive Percarditis? Tamponade?

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Nino Malo
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 30
   Posted 5/19/2005 7:23 PM (GMT -7)   
I have recently been diagnosed with constrictive pericarditis by a cardiologist at a VA hospital but after reading about the symptoms others experience, I am not convinced that I have it.
 
I have a localized feeling of pressure to the left of midline which occasionally radiates down and across the midline to the right.  CT scan shows moderate pulmonary effusion with some abdominal perfusion.  I occasionally have edema in the calves of both legs and my abdomen but it is relieved rather quickly with Bumex.  If I lie on my back, all the symptoms disappear until I sit or stand up.  The pressure increases porportionally with the amout of fluids I have retained.  I do not have distended juglars nor the percardial knock usually found in CP.  I do tire easily and have some difficulty breathing which I assume is due to the pulmonary edema.  What I remember most is that I have had this same pressure feeling and edema since I woke up from triple bypass surgery two and a half years ago.  That is, it didn't develop over time but was there from the begining.  On May 4, I had a left side/right side heart cath and the doctor informed me I had constrictive percarditis.  He was a cardiologist but not a surgeon and referred me to the Cardiology Department at Emory University in Atlanta.  I only got vague answers there about the "risks outweigh the benefits" and was referred back to the cardiology unit in Charleston.  No one has ever mentioned seeing any calcification on x-rays and it wasn't mentioned in a recent CT scan.  If anyone has any information that may confirm this at CP or implies it may be something else please let me know.  I do have the cardinal symptoms of Class III pulmonary hypertension, however, measurements in my pulmonary arteries revealed normal pulmonary pressures.  I have had echos, nuclear stress tests and pulmonary function tests and nothing was mentioned about CP until this last heart cath.
 
Thanks much for taking the time to read this.
 
Les
 
 

Teri16
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2003
Total Posts : 5230
   Posted 5/19/2005 7:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Les, I'm not a Dr. and even Dr.'s can make errors in diagnosis.  Did you ever consider a 2nd opinion on this?  I would think with something as serious as this that it almost should be mandatory.  I can tell you are either in the medical field or have read an awful lot?~that's not a bad thing~but if you are questioning this as it seems that you are, then I would most definitely seek another opinion.
 
Please take care.  Hugs, Teri tongue
"Because he is he and I am I."......E. V. Lucas

"I Hope You Dance".............LeeAnn Womack
 
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Nino Malo
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 30
   Posted 5/19/2005 8:01 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Teri:
I'm scheduled for a second opinion next Wednesday (May 25?) but I'm worried its like the one I got from Emory. The doctor there seem to accept the first doctor's opinion at face value and didn't question the diagnosis. I think I have more ammunition to hit them with next time but was hoping for something else to suggest. I'm not in the medical field but I have been researching on the internet for months because I don't seem to fit the classic symptoms of anything I read about. There's no doubt I have cardiac compression but I think the big issue is what is causing it other than CP. Again, not to be too repetitive, but I had these symptoms since I woke up from the bypass surgery. Your advice is great and I thank you for it.

Les

Teri16
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2003
Total Posts : 5230
   Posted 5/19/2005 8:22 PM (GMT -7)   

Just another site to look at if you haven't seen it already...Teri

http://www.emedicine.com/med/topic1782.htm

And PS  Good for you, Les, on the 2nd opinion!! tongue


"Because he is he and I am I."......E. V. Lucas

"I Hope You Dance".............LeeAnn Womack
 
Please allow HealingWell to continue helping others by donating:

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