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futurehope

Possible Cause For My Pots - Microvascular Angina

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After having symptoms for years, I may finally have a reason. I am not 100% sure, yet, but will report back.

I am a 63 year old female who has had symptoms for years. I also exercised for years and found minimal benefit, and increased fatigue.

After my cardiologist reviewed my EKG, echocardiogram, cardio-pulmonary test, exercise stress test, and my symptoms, he suspects I have a case of microvascular-angina.

Basically, he described it as a water sprinkler system having some of the holes plugged so that the water does not get squirted out. That may be how the vasculature of my heart is....a bit plugged up. The result of that is that my stroke volume does not increase as it should during exercise as seen on my CPT cardio-pulmonary test. Upon diastole, my heart does not get as much oxygen-rich blood as it needs, so my heartrate increases to compensate for the deficit. Also, this deficit can cause orthostatic intolerance and exercise intolerance.

BTW, my echo, ekg, cardiac event monitor and stress tests were normal. It was the CPT test that picked up on my stroke volume deficit.

What I will be doing about it:

- aggressively addressing my high cholesterol with a big dose of Crestor

- Undergoing 5 weeks of External Counter-Pulsation Therapy in which I will be wearing cuffs that inflate on my lower body during diastole while I am in a reclining position for one hour. This occurs 5 days/week for 5 weeks. The therapy can be repeated if needed. It helps the heart create new "open" microvascular routes.

After therapy, the cardiologist will repeat the CPT test to see if I have improved. There is no direct way to "show" microvascular angina since it does not necessarily "show up", so it is a diagnosis of exclusion.

FYI, the symptoms I have had for a while now despite exercise are:

breathlessness, I cannot sing, and I can be out of breath doing nothing

fatigue

tachycardia

dizziness on occasion

exercise being of no benefit

chest pressure on occasion

Thought I'd put this out there. It may benefit someone. Anyhow, take note that the "usual" heart tests were normal. It wasn't until the CPT test showed my deficit that the cardiologist put all my symptoms together.

I will see how all this goes down and report back if I am able.

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Well definitely keep us posted! I have breathing problems, too, such as if I carry on a conversation with someone for maybe longer than 10 minutes, I almost have to quit talking as I'm out of breath. I can't wait to see if this helps you!

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Yes, Sue. I get embarassed when I get out of breath talking on a telephone or in person. It's embarassing being such a sicko. I refuse to say, "excuse me, I have to stop talking since I'm out of breath."

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Hey futurehope can you explain in a bit more detail, if you don't mind, what your chest pressure would feel like? as well as what sort of duration/ onset? if it was everyday or just on occasion. Also did your chest pressure ever migrate either to your arm, shoulder, or middle abdomen or anything like that? thanks.

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