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Welcome to our health education library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

After Heart Valve SurgeryDespu©s de la operaci³n de las v¡lvulas del coraz³n

A couple walking After Heart Valve Surgery

For the first six to eight weeks after surgery, you'll gain a little more energy and strength each day. Your doctor will discuss what you can and can't do as you recover. You'll have good days and bad days-remember to take things slowly and rest when you get tired.

Walking

  • Walking pumps blood to your heart, improving blood flow throughout your whole body.

  • Begin with a short walk (maybe 5 minutes) and walk for a little longer each day.

  • Choose a safe place with a level surface-like a local park or mall.

  • Wear supportive shoes to prevent injury to knees and ankles. Patient taking a shower

  • Walk with someone. It's more fun and helps you stay with it.

Showering

  • Avoid using very hot water-it can affect your circulation and make you dizzy.

  • Ask someone to stand nearby in case you need help.

 Driving

  • Let others drive for the first 3-6 weeks after your surgery.

  • Motion can worsen pain and some of your medications may make you drowsy.

  Easing into Activity Man gardening

  • After a few weeks, you can start doing light work around your home.

  • Don't lift anything that weighs more than five pounds.

  • Avoid activities such as mowing or vacuuming, which can strain your breastbone.

  • Your doctor can advise you about the best plan for returning to work.

  • Unless your doctor advises otherwise, you can resume having sex as soon as you feel comfortable.

Medications Your Doctor May Prescribe

  • Your doctor may prescribe an anticoagulant medication to prevent bleeding or blood clots that could lead to a stroke.

  • Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic. This helps prevent infection that could scar and destroy your heart valve. You will be given instructions on when to take this medication, such as before dental work, surgery, or medical procedures.

Date Last Reviewed: 2007-01-15T00:00:00-07:00

Date Last Modified: 2007-11-12T00:00:00-07:00

Jay L. Jordan, MD, is an experienced cardiologist and internal medicine physician who provides a comprehensive range of cardiac care services in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Glendale, Burbank, Calabasas and nearby communities. Take the first step in preventing and controlling heart disease with symptoms such as angina, arrhythmias, atrial fibrillation, cardiomyopathy, carotid artery disease, chest pain, congestive heart failure, coronary vascular disease, hypertension, palpitations, shortness of breath and stroke. Call Dr. Jay L. Jordan at 310-854-5493 or request an appointment online.

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