PFO and Clopidogrel

Hello, I shared my story a few weeks ago and now I’m back looking for some advice :blush:
I have returned from a bubble study today where a PFO has been identified. The consultant has suggested that I’ll need a further test (camera down throat) to determine the size and if an op is required to close it. I’m already taking clopidogrel and I guess my question is, for anyone with an unoperated PFO is this the standard medication- ie will this be doing what it needs to do until further tests can determine what’s needed. I’m not 100% sure if I’m making sense but I guess I’m just looking for some reassurance! I hopefully fly on Saturday on much awaited holiday and they said this was all fine too… I guess I’m just feeling a little vulnerable at the moment at the thought of another clot! Thanks in advance for any advice x

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Thanks @Loshy - so excited to be hopefully getting away. The kids are beside themselves with excitement! We’re off to the beautiful Gran Caneria, Puerto Mogan (we’ve been on and off for the past 10years and love it). Travel insurance cost was a bit of shock tho :blush:x


Thanks @jane.cobley thats good advice - I don’t have a stroke nurse but my GP is really good and contactable x

Hi @Loshy if course - I contacted Staysure first but as I was pending medical investigations I couldn’t get cover so went with Allclear x hope that helps!

@Applewhite sorry I can’t help with PFO but wanted to wish you a great holiday. I bet it will be a much needed break after everything you’ve been through.
@Loshy I have used LV for my holiday insurance. I also saw advertised on TV a company called Payingtoomuch. I’ve never used them so no idea what they’re like but they say they are for people with medical conditions.
Holidays - woohoo :parasol_on_ground::parasol_on_ground::parasol_on_ground::partying_face::partying_face::partying_face:


Have an amazing holiday. Pierrot Mogan is a stunning place and the harbour is amazing. Enjoy your holiday. I too am off on the weekend and yes the insurance does come as a shock, but at least we can get away. Just relax and enjoy x

Shwmae @Applewhite, as far as I know, not being a doctor, Clopidogrel is the standard non-clotting medication aside from aspirin. A PFO is something many people live with open without a stroke occurring, but for some the left to right heart shunt may miss it’s intended target and toss out platelets through the hole instead, so yes, Clopidogrel is useful for preventing another clot if this happens but it’s not foolproof.

Thanks @Rups info much appreciated x

I started on clopidogrel, and after a while found it was too effective, causing bruising in my mouth so these days I take aspirin. They are different but equivalent, and both are pretty safe. Clopidogrel is probably the safer one long term based on what I have read but can interact with more other drugs.

A PFO closure is still beneficial. The numbers were something like…. with a blood thinner the chance of a 2nd stroke is reduced to 5%. With a PFO closure that reduces to less than 2%. (Take numbers with a pinch of salt) The tests and procedures they put you through are not pleasant, but a PFO closure is a fairly simple operation. I had one and was back to work full time after 10 days.

Hope that helps. Enjoy your holiday.

Thank you so much. Is so good to hear and learn from others experiences. I hope your recovery has gone well! x

Hi, I was diagnosed with a PFO after a stroke three years ago… I have been clopidogrel and lived with the fear and worry of another stroke…the mental side was the hardest thing, but I eventually realised that life is for living and have holidayed and travelled with no issues… I’ve recently had the PFO closure operation and found out I had a 18mm hole… operation I’m told was a success and six weeks on I’m back in the gym and running on a regular basis as I try to get back to triathlete fitness, something I was participating in before my shock stroke three years ago… one week after my stroke I had my trainers on but I lived in fear, but I wanted normality again… I was lucky in an unlucky situation and I take that blessing forward… I wish you the very best in your journey and recovery and totally understand your concerns and fears… if you have the opportunity please take the PFO closure operation as this will only further provide reassurance in the future… best wishes, take care… and embrace life…:+1:

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Thank you @Fuzzysight44 - your reply is really appreciated. I got on the plane, all was fine and now getting ready for a yoga class on the rocks overlooking the beautiful beach. I’m absolutely going to give this life a big fat hug! :blush: out of interest and I hope you don’t mind my asking but was your vision effected? (Username?) my fat right has some vision loss and hoping it will maybe improve enough to drive again. Good luck with the training!

Hi, yes, I had a stroke on the right side, behind my ear… was paralysed left side and lost left vision. I regained my left side functionality within a day but sight took a few days and then I had no peripheral vision… However over the following months, roughly 3, I got the vision back and recent tests show I have full vision back … incredibly lucky but I was told my fitness saved me and undoubtedly helped with my recovery. I hope the yoga went well, and you’re enjoying your holiday… I’m just back from the Mediterranean and just completed a 12k run this morning, and I have to say since my PFO closure I feel so much better, I didn’t realise I was under par until I had the operation… I don’t get breathless or dizziness anymore and feel I can run so much better, not having to manage my breathing as much… If you get the chance of the operation please go for it… I deliberated over mine, I felt fit and well and did I want to risk tinkering with my heart but I took the plunge and as stated I feel so much better, I was in and out of hospital in a day and out walking the next day…plus the risk of a further stroke is massively reduced. Take care, best wishes and enjoy your holiday. :+1:


Hi hope you have a wonderful holiday with your family. If I have any problems with my medications I phone and speak to the pharmacist who dispenses my medication.
So much easier to talk to the pharmacist than doctor. Dottie x

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Hi , I am waiting to have a bubble echocardiogram also to determine same if if I have pfo. I am currently taking clopidgel and atrovastain .i hope you get done answers. Have a fantastic holiday

i too have a pfo, everyone is born with it, but only 20% don’t close. I am on aspirin

Thanks @Lizzybobs hope the same for you! Holiday is wonderful just having to stop myself from feeling guilty when I hit “the wall” and need to stop x

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Thanks Chris, have you been offered the opportunity for a closure? x

good morning currently waiting for an answer. usually they only close them if they think it caused the stroke or for medical reasons
regards Chris

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@chris67 how is it going? I know the thread is from along time ago but wondering if you have made progress.

I had a Pfo closure in May, all went well and recovery good. Just in hospital for one day, home by 7pm in the evening! I don’t have any after effects, little bit of AF/palpitation for a day or two a couple of weeks after but all settled now.

Really glad i had it done, takes away the chance of another stroke by that “mechanism of injury” in the future.

Best wishes