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I had Bypass surgery on July 2017. The suture area

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Posted on Fri, 8 Mar 2019
Question: I had Bypass surgery on July 2017. The suture area has continued to bother me ever since. At first, it hurt when I was tired or did some lifting. If felt like nerve pain. Like being pricked with a thousand needles. I could not lay down to sleep when it was hurting. The suture line has remained red and raised. I saw the surgeon but he had no answers. It is worst now. I am not doing any lifting but yesterday some head positioning on a wheelchair pt., and my chest really hurt. Hurt bad enough for tears. It has hurt other days with no physical work done. It is now radiating into my right underarm. ( I broke my left collar bone and lose the use of my upper body after a car accident in the "80's". The collar bone never healed. I have never been able to lift well, since the accident. Now, since the heart surgery, I have lost even more of my past strength in my upper body. Is there something I can do?)
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Answered by Dr. Sameer Maheshwari (57 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
It is post sternotomy syndrome

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Welcome.
This is Dr Sameer, cardiologist.
It is very sad to hear that you went through a lot of things but will praise you that you still are holding things fine by yourself. May the lord always be with you.
During sternotomy for CABG, the chest is cut opened and something along with it some nerves also get cut which causes such excruciating pin pricking pain and is called medically as post sternotomy pain syndrome.
Any surgical incision heals with collagen. If it gets too much than it forms keloid (a elevated scar tissue) which is also a cause of pain post CABG.
This topic has been researched and the treatment for it only multivitamins and pain killers. As you are already applying lignocaine (xylocaine) over it, I'll advise you to start with some oral pain killers as per your doctor.
It being red in your case can be a acute inflammation so please ask your doctor about some antiinflammatory drugs too.
I also would like to know why are you not taking aspirin.
I hope this will help you.
Thanks and regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T
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Answered by
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Dr. Sameer Maheshwari

Cardiologist

Practicing since :2010

Answered : 815 Questions

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I had Bypass surgery on July 2017. The suture area

Brief Answer: It is post sternotomy syndrome Detailed Answer: Hi, Welcome. This is Dr Sameer, cardiologist. It is very sad to hear that you went through a lot of things but will praise you that you still are holding things fine by yourself. May the lord always be with you. During sternotomy for CABG, the chest is cut opened and something along with it some nerves also get cut which causes such excruciating pin pricking pain and is called medically as post sternotomy pain syndrome. Any surgical incision heals with collagen. If it gets too much than it forms keloid (a elevated scar tissue) which is also a cause of pain post CABG. This topic has been researched and the treatment for it only multivitamins and pain killers. As you are already applying lignocaine (xylocaine) over it, I'll advise you to start with some oral pain killers as per your doctor. It being red in your case can be a acute inflammation so please ask your doctor about some antiinflammatory drugs too. I also would like to know why are you not taking aspirin. I hope this will help you. Thanks and regards