Hi Folks,

Here’s another incident that I want to share with you, and I hope you enjoy reading this adventure of mine:

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about being fitted with a Holter monitor, to monitor my heart for a 24 hour period. I expected nothing to come from this, and was shocked when I received a phone call from the cardiologists receptionist telling me that the cardiologist wanted to see me A.S.A.P!!!

An appointment was made, and so, instead of going home from where I was staying, I stayed a few extra days. No complaints there though…I was staying with my sister!

My sister and I turned up for the appointment, filled out the forms and waited. We hadn’t waited long when I was called in. I had my speech ready to explain the abnormal ECG reading (so I thought!). The cardiologist took a brief history of my family illnesses. Both parents died of massive heart attacks so needless to say, the Dr was concerned when I told him this!

He then did an ECG, which I could see from where I was lying, was abnormal. I’m not fully experienced at ECG reading, but I do know when an ECG doesn’t look right; but I still wasn’t overly concerned! After the ECG, I had an Echocardiogram, this is like an ultrasound of the heart. It’s very interesting to see the heart pumping, and the blood flow etc. The Dr pointed out a leak to me, I still didn’t fully understand what he was showing me! After this test, we then went back into his office, where he began telling me that there was huge abnormalities of my heart…

I had a HUGE leak between my chambers, and this was affecting the pressure in my lungs! In addition, the strange ECG readings were similar to those seen by someone who as had a heart attack!! I couldn’t believe I was hearing this! How much more can I take? Not just me mentally, but my body?? The dr. wanted to do an angiogram as soon as possible, and so I was booked in for the following day…PHEW things really were moving fast!!

The next day, my sister took me to he hospital. I was given the gorgeous gown to wear! Because I have an atonic bladder, I have to have an indwelling catheter inserted. I usually do this as it saves embarrassment! I lay waiting and praying that everything would be ok…I just couldn’t believe that this was really happening to me.

An angiogram shows the arteries that feed the heart muscle, achieved by injecting dye into a catheter that has been inserted into the femoral artery in the groin. The catheter is feed along the artery and into the heart, as well as into the artery on the heart. Dye is injected and this highlights the arteries. If blockages are present, they can be seen on the monitor.The catheter tip is then fed into the heart where it is able to read the pressures of each chamber. Technology never ceases to amaze me!

I was awake the whole time and was able to see everything on the screen…the dr. explained everything as he went along!! after the angiogram is finished, it takes about 20-30 minutes, the nurse puts pressure on the artery. This is so you don’t bleed to death!! Because I have a bleeding disorder, the nurse was putting pressure on my groin for about 1/2 hour!!

The dr. came and talked to me about the results…the good news: I don’t have blocked arteries! The bad news: I have a condition called “Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy” This is where the point of the heart balloons and doesn’t pump very well. It is a Japanese name that represents the pots that Japanese use to trap octopus!! There are several other names for this condition; “Broken heart syndrome”, “Stress-induced heart failure”. The second name is the one most suitable to me. This condition is caused by stress, physical or emotional and is more common in women than men. The dr. believes that mine was caused by the stress of the prolapses, in particular the first prolapse I experienced!

Thankfully, this condition is transient and will clear in a couple of months. Medication can be given, but unfortunately for me, because my blood pressure is already to low, I’m unable to take it. All I can do is ride the condition out, rest and don’t push myself to hard!

As I write this post, I am in hospital, where I will see the surgeon about my stoma, the haematologist about my blood and the urologist about my bladder…but that will be a whole new post altogether!!

I wanted to share with you about the results of my Holter monitor reading that I thought would show nothing at all…so much for that!!!

Cheers,

~Carolyne~

 

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