after three full open heart surgeries 
in the couple through the femoral   these are the tools i keep at home to try 
to monitor my progress and my heart status it's unrealistic to think that your doctor is 
going to catch every detail as it happens when you   have appointments once a month or once every six 
months you have to take the ownership on yourself   to monitor your own health monitor the data and 
these are the tools i use at home to monitor that   having just gone through another full open heart 
surgery about eight weeks ago i'm still dealing   with some complications and i'll show you why 
these tools are so critical for me especially   the time like right now the first tool i'm going 
to talk about is one of the most basic pulsometer   oxygen sensor or whatever you want to call it in 
the hospital they've been replaced by just a tape   on device that connects to a monitor you can buy 
these for about 20 bucks it's very simple to use   turn the power on squeeze it and just put it over 
the top of one of your index or your middle finger   and it will tell you what your oxygen levels 
are and what your heart rate is the oxygen   levels are really important to monitor either 
after surgery or as you're having heart problems   because it's a measurement for how effective 
your heart is at getting oxygen to the body   so i'm at 97 right now one of the 
things to note is that your levels   may actually be higher when you're 
exercising or when you have just exercised   so think about the impact if i'm just laying 
around on the couch it may only be at 95 because   i'm not exerting myself the body doesn't need to 
work as hard but when i'm exercising it may need   to get more oxygen out there because there's a 
higher demand from the muscles and that brings up   another good point on timing when you're taking 
this data what i do is i use a spreadsheet in   excel and i track these measurements every day 
but you want to make sure that you're doing them   under the same condition so i always do them 
in the morning i get out of bed i come out here   because i've walked i know that i'm going to 
have an elevated heart rate and possibly elevated   blood pressure so i'm going to sit down do some 
things on the computer watch tv for 15 minutes   let everything settle down to a calm state 
and then document what my data points are   the second device we'll talk about is a cardio 
6l mobile it is actually equivalent to a six-lead   ekg now years ago this is something that we 
didn't have as an option for a home but with   my heart rhythm still all over the place this has 
been very critical for me not only to see how i'm   doing for my own peace of mind and knowledge 
but the way that this thing generates charts   has proven useful in being able to email those 
to the doctors let them look at it and let them   diagnose but basically let me know what our next 
step should i go in for a cardioversion should i   give it a couple days what's my actual rhythm what 
are the trigger points what do we need to do and   it saves perhaps a doctor visit and it saves time 
in diagnosis and treatment the way to use this   thing is through your phone app you would go to 
your phone app and log in once you're in the app   there's a couple ways you can use this you can see 
there's three silver parts to the device there's a   battery inside that you have to change out if you 
use it enough again it bluetooth to your phone so   you'll have to set up the connectivity without 
when you start it's not that hard though it's   actually a really easy device to use and then 
it recommends a couple different methods one is   on your knee which is the one i've found to be 
most useful the other way is down on your ankle   so you put a thumb on each of the silver parts 
there you touch the silver part to the back   i'm going to hit record your 
ekg i'm going to hold it real   steady in still and it's going to do a 30 second 
reading all right and it says was this you yes   and today i'm in normal sinus rhythm so that's 
great news if you get an unclassified the first   time you might want to redo it because if you 
break connectivity with your body or it moves   around too much you can get those unclassified but 
it'll actually come back and tell you if you're in   possible afib or tactic cardio which is where 
i've been on and off for the last three weeks   so giving that information again it's not just 
a classification by the device but it's actually   a strip reading is extremely useful to be able to 
convey to your doctors and help them diagnose the   issue once you have that then you can actually 
email it to yourself and every time you do that   they're very tight on this device about 
about patient information so you can't   screenshot the strip you have to email it to 
yourself with the password that you set up   and that means that if you email this strip to 
the doctor you're going to have to provide them   with that password as well to open the file 
and i think this was around 140 or 50 bucks   the next tool is very common most of us have 
seen this before it's just a blood pressure cuff   there's a lot of different styles of this 
this particular one of mine actually talks   to a phone app and it documents it there you don't 
necessarily need to have one of those the biggest   thing you got to know when you're putting this on 
is to make sure that you look for that arrow and   there should be an arrow pointing right down 
the center line into the ditch of your arm   shouldn't matter if you're right or left 
so you put it on make sure it's tight make   sure that the arrow is pointing down the 
ditch of your arm and then sit very calmly   start the device and i'm not going to connect to 
the phone this time because i don't need it i'm   just going to apply the pressure and then it'll 
trickle off when it's finished you'll see the   display on the screen and it's going to tell you 
your blood pressure as well as the pulse rate on   this as well so you're actually going to end up 
getting your pulse rate from the pulsometer from   the cardia and from this and from the next 
tool that i'll describe in a minute as well   so you'll get these different items the 
thing i try to look for is get the one that   measures over time so this is more instantaneous 
and fluctuates as you watch it the cardia takes an   average over the 30 seconds it's getting the strip 
so usually i use this one but this one should give   you a number very similar as well the next tool 
that's being used more and more for these kind of   things is what i have is a polar watch so there's 
the other brands as well i like the polar watch it   connects really nicely to my droid phone i have 
an app on here that captures everything as well   and it syncs but from this one device i wear it 
during sleep so i'm able to catch how my sleep   is how many hours i've had of it the quality of 
the sleep the average heart rate during the sleep   i'm able to look at my activity in other words 
exercise obviously that means you have to track   it that way it captures the data and it'll capture 
my heart rate during that which i also monitor   just to make sure that i'm not going too high on 
a heart rate as my heart is still healing normally   i keep it on the home screen which tells me what 
my heart rate is again i'm trying to keep my heart   rate nice and low as the heart is healing from the 
surgery so that's what's most important to me from   the app i can actually look at say how my sleep 
was last night it'll show me my heart rate it'll   show the heart rate variability it'll show the 
breathing rate and that all looks pretty good for   example here my heart rate was high because it was 
in tachycardia but for four hours during the sleep   cycle it actually dropped to a good rate and you 
can see my breathing rate also changed accordingly   and that brings up something important my heart 
rate in the last few weeks and heart rhythm has   gone back and forth from normal sinus mode around 
60 to 70 beats a minute to tachycardia at around   120 beats per minute sometimes this watch when 
i get up and move around will say things like 75   but i checked it with the pulsometer and it's set 

I've actually had it go the other way where   this device has said 75 and this one said like 
118. let's say you're laying in bed it's easy to   look at the watch but i tend to keep this by the 
bedside as well all day yesterday my heart had   been in tactic hardy with 120 beat per minute rate 
last night laying in bed i was like hey i feel   better i think it might be good and i checked my 
watch and it said that the heart rate was back   down in the 17 range i grabbed this and checked it 
and sure enough this confirmed it was in the lower   heart rate which meant i was out of tachycardia 
felt good all night and then this morning when   i got up i got out the cardia to check it and 
confirm that yes i'm back in normal sinus rhythm   because my heart is in such a critical state right 
now with this rhythm bouncing all over the place   i track them in excel and yes i'm an engineer 
and i like to color code to see how long the   episodes are lasting and document like 
what time this device is a spirometer   if you've had heart surgery like me you're 
going to be very familiar with these what   they want you to do in the hospital is practice 
this thing about every hour at least and just   work on your breath capacity because your breath 
capacity isn't going to be as good starting out   ideally most of them will have a little ball here 
with a smiley face and they want you to maintain a   slow flow and then you monitor how high you get up 
this thing and when you start out it's it's pretty   low it can be a little bit discouraging but you'll 
get there it just takes time and all you really do   is let every breath out you can and that's part 
of the trick is let everything out that you   can and then inhale try to keep the ball on the 
happy zone and see where you get this is unique   compared to the other devices in that it's not 
just a data point to help you measure something   but the act of checking it is actually 
beneficial because you want to have your   lungs you know cleared out you want to have them 
full capacity full use and so that will not only   capture the data but it also allows you to improve 
the situation as you go the other things i'll just   mention is pull box organize you know i've got an 
am and a pm side to this one so it's very useful   i keep a razor blade out here no i've 
never done coke but it's very handy for   doing things like cutting pills in half and 
being able to lay those out and i keep the   bottle cap with the last bottle of beer i drank 
several months ago as a reminder to not do stupid   things and make sure i stay healthy a couple 
other things that i use that are not as critical   for health as these but to me they're still 
important one of them is a common bathroom scale   just monitoring your weight every day to me is 
important because if i start getting too heavy   i know part of that is because i'm laying around 
recovering i'm not exercising as much so i'm not   burning as much calories and as i start to get 
more of an appetite and i eat more i have to be   careful that i don't put on too much extra weight 
i also just stopped taking lasiks a few weeks ago   up to that point they also wanted me to monitor 
my weight because the lasix is what helps get rid   of the extra fluids in your body and if you start 
retaining fluids that could impact your recovery   so they want to make sure i was monitoring that as 
well the other thing that is a bit more cosmetic   but it is health related is body fat i use a 
tape measure and i use a body fat calipers and   i do measure those occasionally now yes you could 
say those are more about cosmetic and how you look   but for me if i'm carrying extra fat to me 
that's not healthy so i want to minimize that   there's a lot that's happened between an open 
heart surgery appetite change different foods that   i may be eating that i wasn't before different 
restrictions you know caffeine restriction   not being able to go to the gym and lift weights 
is a huge impact for me and also not being able to   swim and i'm having to adjust all this so the 
more i'm aware of what's happening to my body   the better i can not only document it but then 
once i get back more into normal and i'm going   to the gym again and eating right then it'll feel 
good to have seen that i'm able to get back to a   healthy state and make these improvements and get 
back to the healthy point that i want to be that's   everything i've been using over the last couple 
months to monitor my health and i tend to use on   a regular basis just to see where everything is at 
and to have these things in case one day you wake   up and you're not feeling as good as you should i 
just like to be aware of what's going on so if you   have some kind of tool or device that you found 
to help monitor your heart health please comment   below these are the ones i've found that work 
best for me so let's all stay healthy together   subscribe to my youtube channel below and let's 
celebrate turning fuel and air into adrenaline



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