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 Dr. George Jacob
Heart Infocenter

Holistic-online.com

Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction)

Life After Your Heart Attack

Relationship Issues - Sex after Heart Attack

Resuming sexual activity is an important part of getting your life back to normal. This, however, could also be the source of fear and anxiety for you and your partner. Many people are worried that the sex will be too strenuous and cause another heart attack. The patient's spouse may feel even more apprehensive; if something happens, the guilt would be hard to bear. Sexual intimacy takes many forms: touching, holding, caressing are ways to gradually resume and share intimacy.

Studies showed that sexual intercourse with your spouse or regular partner is only as straining as briskly walking a half mile or climbing two flights of stairs. If these activities results in angina, shortness of breath or extreme fatigue, then you should discuss it with your doctor before resuming sexual activity.

Talk about your fears and worries with your partner openly. Avoid strenuous positions. The person who had the heart attack will be advised to assume the passive role during intercourse for the first few weeks. Do not engage in sex within half hour of eating. If you are upset, fatigued, or stressed, sexual activity should probably be avoided. Certain heart medications, may interfere with libido and performance. If sex brings on angina, it may be possible to prevent the pains with nitroglycerin tablets ahead of time. Regular exercise, such as walking, bicycling or jogging can improve a patient's stamina and help prevent anginal pains during sexual activity.

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