Coasters and Open Heart Surgery

Anyone in the same boat?
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Coasters and Open Heart Surgery

Postby JNoonez » Mon May 05, 2008 6:29 am

Hi everyone,

I'm on the mend from an April 17th open heart surgery to repair an aneurysm in my aorta and to replace a faulty heart valve. It's been a crazy few weeks, but things are slowly returning to normal (other than the massive coaster trip in June I had to cancel!).

Anyway... I asked my surgeon if I'd ever be able to ride coasters again, and he wasn't able to give me a definitive answer. Was wondering if anyone had been through a similar procedure that would be willing to share their experiences.


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Postby ginzo » Mon May 05, 2008 7:12 am

Wow, you've had a rough couple of weeks. Glad you're on the mend. A few things:

1) Problems with the aorta are among the most serious medical problems that people can have. If it does rupture, the prognosis is not good.
2) Follow your cardiologist's orders to the letter. With the issue of roller coasters, he may just not know and would prefer to err on the side of caution. There is almost *zero* medical research on how coasters affect the human body. I think there have been like 2 studies in the last 20 years or something, according to an article I read in JAMA not too long ago. ... ebcast.cfm?

At about 45:30 someone asks if brain aneurysm patients should avoid roller coasters. But they're talking about brain aneurysms, NOT aortic aneurysms. The aorta is under a lot more pressure than any other blood vessel, so the rules might be different.

If I were you, I'd just err on the side of caution and avoid coasters for the time being.
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Postby FeelTheFORCE » Mon May 05, 2008 7:53 am

My dad had a bypass last summer and him and I have been wondering the same thing. He is just going to take it slow for now. I am going to GADV in the first week of June and I doubt he'll be riding Kingda Ka, El Toro, Nitro, Batman, etc. He'll probably only ride the smaller ones like Rolling Thunder, Dark Knight, etc.

Anyone here know if people who have had a heart attack in the past and a single bypass surgery should ride coasters or not? As I'd like to know the same for my dad as well. The thing is, though, he plays tons of sports and is doing just great, so it's not his heartbeat we are worried about because hid pulse and BPM are way higher when he plays racquetball than they will be at the top of a lift hill, rather more the effects the G-Forces will have on his already damaged heart.
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Postby AllenA07 » Mon May 05, 2008 8:52 am

Glad to hear that you're ok, as far as your question I really don't know what to tell you. If it were me however I'd be sure to check, and double check with a Dr before doing anything. All I'm reminded of here however is those warning signs that so many people ignore in front of the rides.

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Postby orangeblue » Mon May 05, 2008 9:24 am

I'd say don't risk it without getting accurate medical information from a doctor that knows about your specific case. Even if people on this forum have gone through certain similiar procedures and were told whether they can or cannot ride roller coasters, they have no way of knowing whether it is the same for your situation. If your doctor dosen't know, then you should ask other doctors, preferably those who specialize in heart surgery, and I would urge you not to base any decisions on the responses of people on the internet that have no medical experience and don't know you.

Good luck getting better!

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Postby Jew » Mon May 05, 2008 9:42 am

FWIW, heart conditions and recent surgeries are common warnings (which means parks recommend you don't ride) on almost every coaster. I would say stick to those warnings unless your doctor specifically says otherwise.

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