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Forum Name: Valvular Heart Diseases

Question: complications after heart valve repair


 goody7788 - Sun Apr 05, 2009 11:39 am

My mother had minimally invasive heart valve repair in 2006. She was diagnosed with MRSA after surgery. The area of the incision was infected. The wire was left in so not to tear the repair. The infection cleared and she was released, but she was very congested and had to cough and spit throughout the day and especially in the am. Every few months she spits large blood clots. She has had ekgs and they have show nothing. Her doctor says the area from surgery is irritated and when the spitting up of blood occurs she is put on Clarithromycin. This seems to help the problem but it continues every few months. She is other wise healthy but it is shocking at times to see how much blood she spits up. She was also tested for upper and lower gi but all was found good. She says she feels good but could this be something else?
 John Kenyon, CNA - Fri Apr 10, 2009 8:15 pm

User avatar Hello --

If none of the usual exams are showing anything other than the presence of MRSA, this is an odd situation and I'm wondering if the blood may not be coming from some entirely different area just coincidentally, namely her sinuses. This can happen for a lot of reasons and can be insidious with nighttime drainage leading to collection in the bronchial tree, then coughing up in the morning. Since she seems to produce more blood and phlegm in the mornings anyway, this might be something worth looking into. The nasal and sinus passages are rich with very superficial capilaries, and drying (for instance due to nasal O2, as in ICU, or just in a dry environemnt) can often cause bleeding which will drain downward during the night. Since there's no mention of anemia or other obvious areas of concern this may explain the problem.

Hope this is helpful to you. Good luck to you and your mother. Follow up with us here if needed.

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