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  1. #1
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    riding with stent implant?

    Recently had a stent installed in my left interventricular artery, which was 80% blocked. I plan on doing a ride next week but a little spooked about the whole thing. It will have been only 2 weeks since the procedure. Doc says I can get back on the back.... Anybody had this experience? The drugs make me a little loopy and I certainly won't ride if I'm even a little light headed. I've been told the affect will diminish in time. Just want to get back on the bike.

  2. #2
    fog
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    I had 3 stents put in in April 2015, I did not start to ride until around 2 months after I had the implants. I then just rode real easy and did not push it or try and raise my pulse. After around 3 to 4 months my Cardiologist told me to go for it.

    BUT I strongly recommend that you have your Cardiologist's approval before you do much more than walk.

    good luck,
    Wayne

  3. #3
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    The only thing I would add is to make sure the doctor knows what level of output you are going for. He may be used to people who do a little bit of road riding or stationary bike riding. If you are a really hard biker, you may want to make that clear so that his advice is catered to you.

  4. #4
    fog
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    MSU Alum, Great catch. I forgot to include that it is very important for your Doc to know how you ride.
    I spend a good 10 minutes talking with mine before he gave me the go ahead.
    Thanks,
    Wayne

  5. #5
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    Good for me my cardiologist is a mountain biker. Though I was a little surprised when I asked him how soon I can get back on the bike and his reply was, "1 week." Still, I'm going to be using the trainer for a couple of weeks until my follow up appt.

    Thanks for the input. Sure is good to know a stent is not a show stopper for what I love to do.

  6. #6
    fog
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    il2mb,
    Good luck.
    I forgot to mention that I had a hart attack before I had my stents put in. That may have made a difference.
    I have no restrictions and my cardiologist urges me to push myself.
    I hope we helped you.
    Wayne

  7. #7
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    80% block should cause no damage to the heart. You can actually have a 100% block and if it is progressive the heart vascularize around it. You need a stent but the heart is fine and you can go back to exercise very soon after the operation. Your performance will be most likely better, your blood supply to the heart is now normal, minus side effects on the drugs.

    Different story with a sudden heart attack with 100% block: this damages your heart that is literally wounded, cells die, and it takes time to heal, if you ever do.

    I had a heart attack and one stent put in an emergency intervention 13 months ago. Doctor instructions were not to wash dishes when I got out of the hospital, it took about 2 weeks to walk more than a few blocks, a month to go back on the bike for short rides, 3 months for normal rides and the ok from the doctor to push my heart rate, 6 months to psychologically feel like I could do it with no consequence.

    In your case follow the advise of your doctor and go back, the more the wait the more your conditioning will go down and then you will think that it is the heart! The mind plays tricks easily.

    Enjoy the new plumbing!

  8. #8
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    "Your performance will be most likely better." Davide

    Not likely, I sucked before and I'll probably suck after.

    Thanks for the input...

  9. #9
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    Hi all, FWIW I'm a clinical exercise physiologist with over 17 years experience in cardiac rehabilitation. The biggest concern immediately after stent placement regarding strenuous activity is that you may start to bleed from the cath site. Sometimes, not often, the bleed can be bad enough that the accumulated blood needs to be surgically evacuated. Doesn't happen often, but sucks when it does. Did they use a femoral (leg) or radial (wrist) approach? This complication is more common with femoral caths which are kind of going out of style these days.

    Anyway, after a week or so you should be pretty much good to go. If it were me, or someone I cared about, I'd start off with an easy to moderate ride just to see how it felt. After that, go ride your butt off as long as you feel OK.

    Full disclosure: you SHOULD go to an outpatient cardiac rehabilitation program. The research is rock solid on this, odds are you'll live longer and have fewer cardiac events if you go to SOME cardiac rehabilitation. The magnitude of this effect is identical (and additive) to that of taking all your cardiac meds (aspirin, statin, and an anti-platelet) and go to your follow up physician up appointments - about a 30-35% reduction in cardiovascular mortality over 5 to 7 years. So, a 60-70% reduction in risk for taking your meds, going to the doc when you're supposed to, and going to a couple of weeks of monitored exercise and risk reduction education. Having said (typed) all that, most mountain bikers probably DON'T go to rehabilitation. Their call, they're adults, but at least you have the facts now.

    Good luck. Stay on that bike. Have fun.

  10. #10
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    Great info by Fairbanks007. I had 4 stents in my right coronary artery put in back in early 2011 and though being very active in sea kayaking up to the procedure, it was still a few weeks recovery time for getting to feel "normal" again.

    Here, I thought it was standard operating procedure for all cardiac stent patients to undergo cardiac rehab as Fairbanks007 recommended. It should be. I underwent 4 weeks of it (3 times a week) and glad I went. There, the nurses on site, via your heart monitor, could see how you were progressing with the various exercises and routines that is part of cardiac rehab.

    I simply cannot understand any cardiologist would allow a patient to go off on a ride some 2 weeks removed from the procedure, without first undergoing cardiac rehab to see where you stand; followed by allowing the patient free reign to get back to doing normal life things. And especially knowing the area where the stents were placed in is likely still swollen and a bit tender. Best wishes and hope you let everyone how it worked out for you!

  11. #11
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    Well, today was the day. Been two weeks since the stent implant. Did a hike with the wife yesterday and kept thinking this sure would be a lot nicer on my bike. Nothing against the wife but take me off the bike a couple of weeks and I get real grumpy. Anyway, did about 4 miles. Nothing too strenuous, but added some technical climbing that I knew last month would have brought on the chest pain. Felt great! No pain just a little light headed when pushing hard. This may be due to the meds I'm on. What a relief......

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