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connie r. Recipient

How to tolerate HMII carry bag weight

Does anyone have any ideas to ease the weight of the HMII carry bag? I had all kinds of ideas to ease the burden, but none of them worked. I contacted ThoraTec with a couple ideas for bag improvement, but haven't heard anything back for several months.

The weight of this is a body pain: neck, shoulders, back, hips, legs, feet.

My best to all.

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Ken B.

HI Connie I wish I could tell you it get better but seems to get heaver over time I have a 2 wheeled luggage cart, Its light weight but still a pain in the butt. Planning life around the bag is rough I never get more than a light bag of food at the store because I live on the 2nd floor. And having someone carry your bag is tough on the nerves. You just have to plan things out don't be afraid to just stop and relax every few mins. As far as me I'm not embarrassed just to sit on the floor at the store it just happens. People ask and I just say I have the flu and they back off. Go slow enjoy life your in my thoughts and prayers. Ken

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Martina H.

Hello Connie,

I hope you are well at this time.

I have been living with the VAD for 2 years now and there is no doublt that it is heavy and causes pain.

When I was hospitalized I used to hang it on an IV pole and push it around, but my home has carpeting making that not a feasable option. I place it in my lap with the strap around my neck when I am seated and have nowhere else to place it. I sleep with it buckled about my waist so that it will not fall on the floor. If my home had hard floors (wood or tile) I think that I might use something on wheels to push it around.

There are days when it gets to me and it feels heavy, but those are days that I would not still be alive if not for my Vaddy! So, I continue to soldier on with it and try to be more appreciative. When all elso fails, I keep to myself until I come back to a more accepting, cheerful,and appreciative outlook. Prayer and meditation also helps me a lot.

I hope this post is helpful and up-lifting for you. Just knowing that there are others who can relate to this unique situation we find ourselves in is a help and a comfort for me.

Stay Well

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Joann H.

check out our website We came up with the idea in between hospital stays for my mother who is 76. These are worn with either cargo pants or shorts to hold the battery or a vest that can hold the batteries. We take special requests and have more masculine patterns that will be added. Feel free to contact me at

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Janice & Burrell B.

Hi, I am Janice Billingslea, the wife of an LVAD recipient. My husband was implanted with the LVAD in August of 2012. I dreaded him coming home carrying the entire weight of the HeartmateII system. So I came up with a concealed medical garment that gives you the comfort of a T-Shirt. I designed a customized T-shirt that houses the batteries and controller and can be worn comfortably under sweaters and some shirts. It's discreetly concealed and he loves it. It's made of a light weight washable fabric. Please look at our website: for more information. This was designed to maintain my husand's dignity and integrity. I am sure that you will be pleased. My husband returned to his social and business activities and is enjoying his fashionable clothing that the wore before the surgery. We would love to hear from you. INVISIVAD TSHIRT. I've included a picture for your to take a look at Burrell and Janice Billingslea

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Linda R.

I'm a Physical Therapist at Spectrum Health Continuing Care Center in Grand Rapids. Our Heart Center JUST started implementing the HeartMate II, and we're so excited to be taking our patients through cardiac rehab!

For patients who are first discharging from our facility, we recommend a four-wheeled walker with a basket under the seat. The basket is the perfect size for the carry bag (which we've nicknamed "The Nuclear Football"). It's also nice, at first, to have the walker, because when you get tired during walking, you have a place to sit. Some patients use the walker for the rest of their lives.

Once your 90 days are up, your incision is healed, and your surgeon lifts your sternal precautions, my recommendation is a backpack for younger, more active patients. By this time, patients have more endurance and are steadier on their feet, no longer requiring the walker for balance. A backpack will distribute the weight more evenly between your shoulders, so you don't get the cramping sensation on one side of the neck that comes from the pressure of the strap. Obviously, avoid ones that strap at the waist. If you prefer the support from a chest strap, just make sure it's well above your lines.

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keya t.

Brand bags cheap, you can take weight of the HMII carry bag of a better way to unique bag you purchase. You can adjust the shape of a handbag . Everyone should do the same for your next party or event. You want to be unique and so is your mode.