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donnie1950 posted:
hello my names Donnie and i have congestive heart failure and its in the last stage been told by Drs there is nothing else thet can be done to help me.I'm wondering if there is anything new on the market that could help?I've been rejected for stem cell so my options are limited not candidate for open heart surgery again!any advice would be much appreciated
cardiostarusa1 responded:

As reported, some cardiac patients, who were extremely ill, and who had an LVAD (heart pump to assist the left ventricle) implanted, were able to stay alive long enough until a heart became available, or were able to avoid a heart transplant completely, as being on an LVAD (and then having it explanted/removed) helped to reverse some of the damage done to the heart, allowing one to live as near a normal life as humanly possible.

Additionally, it is often said that an implantable cardiodefibrillator (ICD) is like having a rescue squad inside your chest. As demonstrated in clinical studies (patients meeting the current criteria), in some cases, those with a low (moderate) or very low (severe) left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), an ICD can improve the outcome (especially if the heart's electrical system goes haywire).

The % factor - Heart function

Some individuals who have a low (moderate) or a really low (severe) LVEF feel fine and function well, while others do not. LVEF is the single-most important clinical indicator of heart function, how well the heart is pumping.

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 imaging.

Pertinent excerpt from an article 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.)


As applicable to the patient, in some cases, along with a doctor recommended/authorized exercise regimen (unless contraindicated), LVEF can be increased, sometimes substantially, by customizing/tweaking experimental and established 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.

Best of luck down the road of life.

Take care,


WebMD member (since 8/99)



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James Beckerman, MD, FACC responded:
Hi Donnie,

It might be helpful to talk to your doctor about what kind of treatments are currently using, and then discussing what else could be available, including BiV-ICD, LVADs, etc. It seems as though you are not a candidate for a heart transplant by your note. Sometimes it can also be helpful to have an evaluation at a medical center that specializes in the care of people with advanced heart disease. I wish you all the best.

dustinskinner replied to James Beckerman, MD, FACC's response:
Hello, So I only have a few mins before my two little girls wake up for school,,,but. yesterday morning my wife (34) had day surgery on her back for a herniated disk. She was home relaxing for about 5 to 6 hours just fine, but then noticed that her heart rate was super high (145). We went to the ER and they have done a ton of tests....they can not figure out why she is having IST. At the ER her Heart Rate was in the 120's. She is not at the hospital I would like her to be at for heart issues, but it is the hospital where she got her back surgery earlier (we're in Wisconsin). So they admitted her and moved her to a observation room. it is now the next day 7:00am. nothing has changer. they want to do a Echo and try beta blockers this morning. I had to run home to make sure the kids got off to school and do not really catch on to where Mommy is. I just feel at a loss and so stressed.... because of surgery yesterday morning i have been up since 4:00am and just am so worried. I keep thinking she is gonna she will just up and have a heart attach any min. So i just i just wanted to vent and see if anyone has any advice......

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