Profile picture for user Gary L
Joanne L. Caregiver

Covid 19 fears

Hi-  I am a new recipient for the Heartmate 3.  My surgery was on May 3 of this year. My recovery has been a little rocky- but my medical team has really helped and I am now stable.. That said- I have really been having quite a bit of trouble with worrying about contracting Covid. I  had  my usual labs this morning and completely freaked out because I thought there was too many people in the lab area. I wear the highest grade medical N95 there is. I don't know about anyone else but the last three years have been extremely hard for us sick people. I was diagnosed with heart issues  about six months before the pandemic started. I had never had any serious health problems before this- so it was really shocking to me. This is so hard- to not only be dealing with a serious health crisis but also a pandemic on top of it!! It seemed impossible to stay safe- but here I am still standing! I seem to be experiencing some PTSD from the whole thing. Anyone else having similar issues? I am working with a great therapist to help me to alleviate this horrible anxiety. I am trying to start doing more because that is the purpose of all this hard work. We have to live right? I am determined to move forward and do more. Any support from others going through this would help.   Thanks, Joanne L.

Profile picture for user
James J.


I had anxiety and depression after my surgery a little over three years ago. 
I also have a pacemaker/defibrillator.
I relate my anxiety to the change in life and began taking Lexapro which I continue today. 
As for PTSD I was shocked quite a few times initially without expecting it and still jump at loud noises.

yes, the first six months are difficult, but am happy to be living a good life.

Jim J

Profile picture for user VINCE BUCCI

In reply to by James J.

Vince B.

Hi my name is Vince I had my LVAD put in on the 27th of May of this year my last shower was May 26th I had it done at the University of Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia Pennsylvania they say I cannot take a shower but  when I went for rehab I went over to this Hospital in Abington Pennsylvania and the doctors there said that I could take a shower but I don't know what bag to get or nothing like that I was wondering if you had any problems like that and you're right  after I had my LVAD I had  anxiety and depression and I still have anxiety I was having problems with fluid retention right now I still have problems my feet are numb my legs are numb but the fluid is off I was just wondering if you had any problems like that and I also have a Pacer defibrillator too they had to turn my LV up from 5300 speed to 5700 to get the fluid off 

Profile picture for user goodwench1000

In reply to by Vince B.

Diane B.

Hi Vince

What type of LVAD did you have? Before you were discharged did they not discuss shower with you? If you have Heartmate there is a specific shower bag you can use from Thoretec. Are you doing your own dressing changes?

Profile picture for user mmatski

In reply to by Cherie J.


Got my Heartmate3 on 3/10/20

Triple vaxxed and I got covid twice this year.

I almost died the second time. I had emergency open-heart surgery on my 2nd Vadiversary, where they took a clot out of my left lung that was as big as my fist.

I am slowly recovering. Breathing is a little harder now. I guess a damaged lung will do that.

Everyone is different

@LVADMat on Instagram

Profile picture for user damhof1961
Duane A.

Joanne:  Therapy will help but encourage you to put everything in God’s hands.  Ask Him for His peace and to take away all anxiety, worry or concern.  Let go and let God take care of you.  He will and you’ll find a peace that is beyond human understanding.  No matter what hat comes, He loves you and has your back!🙏

Profile picture for user goodwench1000
Diane B.

Have you had your booster shots?  When my husband had his LVAD 2 years ago they discharged him on zinc and Vit D to help immune system. Talk to your team about that if not on the two.

Profile picture for user
James J.


My VAD coordinator gave me the shower bag several weeks after my surgery. I just think she wanted me to get used to my HM 3.

I now shower daily with the aqua guard cover over my weekly dressing.

I also have a pacemaker/defibrillator which didn’t like the pump at first.

My surgery was about three and half years ago.

I relate to foot numbness(still), depression and anxiety (take Lexapro) and increasing the pump speed to 5600-5700.

I retain fluids in abdomen and take lasix twice daily.

Also, had Covid with no problems.