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Is my heart functioning normally?

Q: I am a 42 years old man having a family history of coronary disease. I had a stent placed in my left anterior descending (LAD) artery 3 months back. The doctor suggested 64-slice CT scan, which revealed 90-95% blockage in LAD. Later this was confirmed through an angiogram. I am taking blood thinning and anti-blood-clotting medication (Ecosprin, Monit-SR, Clavix, Lipiez) along with the hypertension drug Nebistar. My sugar and cholesterol levels are within limits but I feel some glitches and discomfort, occasionally. After 2 months of the procedure of stenting, the treadmill test confirmed that my heart was functioning normally. Still, whenever I have discomfort, which may be due to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) as a side effect of these medications, I become nervous. I am walking daily and don’t feel any discomfort while walking and sleep well too. After the treadmill test, can I be sure that there is nothing wrong with my heart? What is the reason for my occasional discomfort? Is this because of GERD or my own anxiety? Can I practice yoga apart from walking? What are the precautions I should take?

A:

  • The gold standard tests for coronary artery patency are coronary catheterization and CT angiography. All other tests including treadmill are less sensitive.
  • It is difficult to be sure. If the symptoms are due to GERD, they should respond well to proton pump inhibitor (PPI) therapy.
  • Sure, you can practice yoga. Regular exercise (including yoga) are important for you.
  • Keep your weight, BP, blood glucose, serum lipids under control. Regular exercise. Moderate alcohol use (2 drinks/day) if you drink. No smoking.

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