Thursday, September 10, 2009

Getting Off of Oxygen

I began using oxygen at night and then 24/7 for shortness of breath due to damaged heart valve. I had heart surgery Jan. 23, 2009. I was still short of breath afterwards and still had to use the O2 afterwards.

My recovery was slow but my breathing gradually improved and I was able to get down from 5 or 4 liters to 2 liters. I am still at that point. I live in the mountains at 7200 feet elevation. I drive down to 5000 feet (yes, Albuquerque is also a mile high like Denver.) My SAT (saturation of O2 will dip down into the 80 percent mark. At the lower elevation I can breathe without the O2 for short trips away from my van and portable oxygen tank like picking up the mail at the post office and going into the bank.

I guess I am just afraid to do without it for good. Although I hate having the cannula in my nostrils and dragging around the 60 plastic tube that gets tangled on things (nearly tossed me to the floor the other night. I walk with a cane now instead of a walker due to arthritis, no, it hardly hurts but one leg is shorter than the other and I walk with a serious limp.)

Anyway, does anyone have any advice as to how I can develop my breathing and get off the O2 for good? My heart is functioning well with two new bio-valves, by the way. No lasting heart disorders. I do have high blood pressure and take meds to control it. I continue to walk as often as I can but do not do exercizes per se. I lost a great deal of weight but have put some of it back on. After not being able to eat while sick for nearly a year, I am enjoying food again.

Please leave your comments. Thanks, Sandy

No comments: