Preventing a heart attack is a lot easier when you -- and your doctor -- know exactly what's going on in the vessels that carry blood throughout your body. Are they blocked with plaque or free-flowing? To find out, your doctor may recommend a high-tech imaging test that shows a clear image of your arteries. Here's what you need to know about them.
It may be
worthwhile to keep all of your medical information together and handy during
your recovery, including:
Self-care instructions. These are instructions from your
medical team about how to care for yourself. You may want to have a folder or
binder to keep this information organized.
Medicine information. This is a list of all the medicines you are prescribed after you leave the hospital.
These medicines might be different from medicines you took before
your CABG surgery.
Contact information. This is a list of the names and
phone numbers of your primary care physician, cardiologist, and cardiac
surgeon, in case of an emergency. You may also want to keep a calendar with the
dates and times of scheduled follow-up appointments.
information. This is a card with information on your health insurance coverage, in case
you need to return to the hospital. You may want to keep this in your wallet
in case you are not at home.
Caring for your wounds
major aspect of your recovery is caring for the incision (sternotomy) made to
open your chest during CABG surgery. Because it is so important that this
incision heals properly, many limitations are placed on you during your
recovery. You also need to take care of the skin around your arm or leg
incisions. All of your incisions need to be taken care of so that they can heal
quickly and without infection. To do this, you need to:
Take a warm (not hot) shower every
Apply an antiseptic, such as povidone-iodine (Betadine, for
example), to your incisions after you shower.
incisions every day.
Tell your doctor if you notice excessive pain,
redness, or swelling or if you have a fever.
Remove the tape from your incisions (it will come
off by itself).