Echo/Stress Stressed out

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2013
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 9/22/2013 9:33 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Forum,

I am 38 year old male.

I had a goal this summer to run 100 miles (not all at once). Around mile 88, I started to have chest pains. They were first diagnosed as reflux, none of those treatments helped. Endoscopy looked good. Had chest xray, that looked good. I had one troponin draw that came back 0.11. Then was 0.6 next day or two.

I did the stress/echo. It showed normal ECG and echo at rest. Showed ejection fraction at 60%.

With exercise, it showed abnormal ST-T flat approx. 1mm in leads II, III and avF (which I know means anterior).
The echo during exercise showed hypokinesis mid-anterior, mid anteroseptal, apical anterior and apical cap. Says left ventricular ejection fraction increases. The left ventricular chamber decreases.

Both findings compatible with ischemia.

I am calling the cardiologist tomorrow (as its the weekend). Have an appt scheduled but my doc wants me to get in earlier.

So I am obviously worried. From what I gather, it sounds like a blockage perhaps in LAD (which I found out is called widowmaker shocked ) I am obviously getting this looked into ASAP...but am having a ton of anxiety about making it to doctor. I do not have any chest pains as I have not exerted myself...does anyone have any insight or advice?

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 9/23/2013 12:09 PM (GMT -6)   
I am sorry I did not get to your thread until just now.  Big Breath and I hope your cardiologist had time to see you today and you are learning all about what is going on as I write this. Anytime we are told there is a problem with our heart we are bound to become alarmed and you have the right to feel anxious.
So let's take a look at what may be going on; please remember I am not a physician.
Three major arteries feed the heart, and the main one is called the left anterior descending artery (LAD). It runs down the middle of the heart to feed the bulk of the muscle. Your referred to the widow-maker which is a term from years ago before all of the advancements in cardiology. The widow-maker lesion is a blockage — called a stenosis — at the very beginning of the artery.
Diagnostic tests help your heart doctor identify the location, type and extent of your coronary artery disease. The results of these tests, the structure of your heart, your age, the severity of your symptoms, the presence of other medical conditions, and your lifestyle will help your cardiologist, surgeon and you determine what type of treatment is best.
For those who have multi-vessel or left main coronary artery disease, surgery, percutaneous intervention (PCI) or stents is usually what the Dr. will consider.
Some cardiac surgeons feel failure to discuss CABG (coronary artery bypass grafting) means that the patient is often denied the best treatment option.
Again, I am not a cardiologist and what you want is the best treatment and probably a second opinion unless you are in an emergency situation which hopefully will never be the case.
Keeping you in my prayers and hoping to talk with you again soon.
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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2013
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 9/26/2013 4:06 PM (GMT -6)   
First, thanks Kitt for the response. It was really nice to read in the hospital. :) See below.

I thought I would post a follow up since a lot has happened since my first post. Once I knew what was causing my symptoms, I was pretty scared. Then the following night I had some shortness of breath...and my wife took me to the ER.
They decided to keep me over night and did troponin tests, chest xrays, etc. EKG looked good, so I am not sure why the shortness of breath. Anxiety? Maybe.

They cathed me next morning due to abnormal stress/echo (see above). They found I had a 99% blockage in my LAD. It was really in two spots right next to each other...but stented it with one big stent. Now you can see the blood flowing like oil.
Doctor said I had some other plaques that were 10-20%ers. I am on lots of new meds for my new diagnosis of coronary heart disease. Beta blocker, statin, aspirin, brilinta. I am 38 and need a pill box now.

All of the med staff keep saying "but youre so young". I guess I am licking my wounds this week. Back to work tomorrow (I find it amazing I had my heart worked on Monday and am back to work Friday).

I think getting back to my normal life will help me start to process all of this. I am going to try and take this disease and make the best of it. I was running when this all started, so I will discuss a cardiac rehab program with my doc next week at my follow up. I don't eat all that bad, I was exercising....but I used to smoke, I didnt always eat well in my life, etc. I guess it all changes when you get married...have 3 kids...

So on that note, let this be my personal affirmation to the internet world (and myself) that I am going to kick this diseases ***.

Elite Member

Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 9/26/2013 5:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Hexfly, my husband had a similar experience. He was a bit older, but very active and fit, no symptoms of any problem whatsoever with his heart. Because he has type II diabetes his doc did a routine EKG and stress test. Ten days later he was having an angiogram, which ended up being an angioplasty with placement of three stints. One of his coronary arteries was 99% occluded; I almost fainted when the cardiologist told me that.

He's had seven wonderful years since then with no further issues and still going strong.
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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2013
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 9/26/2013 8:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, Judy. That is surely encouraging. I just got my literature in the mail for cardio rehab. I'm in.

Looking forward to the possibilities. Thanks again for the uplifting story and my best to you and your husband.
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