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Me and Heart Failure

When I was working as an RN I got sick with the flu and had to go home. I stayed out of work for a week -- this was in February of that year. That March I woke up at 5 o'clock that morning and could not breathe.

My coworkers to the rescue

I texted my work and said I had respiratory distress. When our office opened at eight they called me and could tell I was in distress. One of the girls came and took me to our local hospital. They put four liters of oxygen on me before they even got a blood test.

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When the doctor came over to my bed he said they thought I was having a heart attack and wanted send me down the road to a bigger hospital. I went down there and stayed three days so they could do a heart catherization. They told me, evidently, when I had the flu it attacked my heart.

Lifestyle changes and medication keep me alive

I have been watching my sodium ever since. I had a defibrillator-pacemaker placed a year ago due to my heart being so enlarged. I have been on Entresto since 2018. I still watch my sodium, but I have to take 60mg of Lasix every day now. I eat a lot of salmon and broccoli. I do eat sweets in limited amounts, and I weigh less than I have in years.

I feel very fortunate that I have lived as long as I have -- 8 years. But the funny thing was I never did like salt and never ate it. Not on eggs, cucumbers, watermelon, cantaloupe, tomatoes. Anything people salted, I didn't. My downfall is a good all-the-way hotdog. I do get me one about every six months, but then I am more strict about my sodium, the day before and the day after.

You can live with congestive heart failure if you are very strict and reward yourself once in a while.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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