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Congestive Heart Failure with IPF
Destructis posted:
I was diagnosed with IPF in October of 2012. I am 52 years old. I had a heart attack at 38 years old. Heart issues run in my family. My father died in his early 40's from a heart attack. I have 5 stents in my heart. Well anyway, I had my first cardiologist appointment last week in a long time. On Tuesday I went back for a Vascular test, stress test and a Echocardiogram. My doctor went over all the results with me before I left and I didn't understand some of what he was talking about so I asked him to write down the things that would be helpful for me to Google and research online.

He wrote down..

Congestive Heart Failure
Left Ventricular Ejection Fraction 25-30%
I am candidate for an AICD (defibulator)

Before I left I asked him if there was going to be any medicine he was going to prescribe and he said not right now.

In my research, I found that alot of the symptoms are the same with IPF. It listed some types of medicine usually prescribed.

So did he not prescribe anything because the ejection fraction is so low and I have IPF? Now I am wondering if he didn't prescribe anything or give me many instructions at all because between the IPF and the Congestive Heart Failure and the Ejection Fraction because I am pretty much screwed.

I am ok with it if I am. I already know I am screwed because I have IPF None of that scares me. When I was telling my kids about the IPF, I even threw a joke in and said "at least I will get a handicap sticker for my car". They laughed but got mad at me after. They are 21 and 23.

Did I mention I am diabetic also?

So should I assume that I am screwed because there was no prescription or instructions? He may be in a position where there is nothing he can do and it comes down to a quality of life thing. He may have been trying to tell me that and I wasn't getting it.

The vascular test showed I have 90% narrowing/blockage in my left leg on the underside of my knee on the back of my leg. He does want me to see a vascular surgeon on that part of it.

Other than that, all he said was come back on August 13th. So right now I need the truth. If I am going to be very limited in the not to distant future, I need to get things in order.

Has anyone else been in this situation with the multiple things wrong? What do I expect from all of this? The truth is all I want right now.

Thanks for reading this.
cardiostarusa1 responded:

"I was diagnosed with IPF"

I assume you are refrring to this condition.

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

"Congestive Heart Failure

"Left Ventricular Ejection Fraction 25-30%"

As applicable to the patient, in some cases, along with a doctor recommended/authorized exercise regimen (unless contraindicated), left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) can be increased, sometimes substantially, by customizing/tweaking prescription drug-therapy (e.g., Coreg, which showed, back in its clinical trial days, that it could boost LVEF in some individuals) and supplemental (complimentary or integrative medicine) therapy, as deemed applicable.

Just one example of complimentary medicine is the use of the supplement Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10 or ubiquinone, a vitamin-like substance) for heart failure (though currently not scientifically proven, some doctors may advise the patient to give it a try) which may/can (i.e., along with doctor directed prescription drug-therapy, and with the doctor knowing about any supplements being taken) help to improve LVEF in some, with other supplements sometimes added to the mix.

Additionally, as reported, as applicable to the patient, if/when the LVEF improves substantially or even recovers, and the heart appears to function near-normal or normally, other problems (unseen, that is, at a cellular or molecular level) often exist, or possible problems may/can occur anytime down the road, putting one at an increased risk.

Understanding Your Ejection Fraction
**To get a decent estimate of LVEF, a MUGA scan is reported as being the most accurate of the non-invasive methods.

Pertinent excerpt from an article on by Richard N. Fogoros, M.D.

When is the MUGA scan more useful than other heart tests?

The advantages of the MUGA scan over other techniques (such as the echocardiogram) for measuring the LVEF are twofold
. First, the MUGA ejection fraction is highly accurate, probably more accurate than that obtained by any other technique. Second, The MUGA ejection fraction is highly reproducible. That is, if the LVEF measurement is repeated several times, nearly the same answer is always obtained. (With other tests, variations in the measured LVEF are much greater.)
Best of luck down the road of life.

Take care,


WebMD member (since 8/99)



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Destructis replied to cardiostarusa1's response:
Thank you very much for taking the time to answer in so much detail.

You are correct about the Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. Your answer helped me to understand where everything is. I have done a lot of research online and have seen the Cleveland Clinic web page.

He didn't mention exercise to me when speaking with me. That is probably because I lasted under 5 minutes on the treadmill due to the Pulmonary Fibrosis with my stress test.

Based on what I have read, and your response, I am at a point where it is all about quality of life.

Again, I very much appreciate your response.
cardiostarusa1 replied to Destructis's response:
You're welcome.

Take good care,




It is always ultimately up to the patient to be his/her own best health advocate.

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