Diabetes,  Health,  Heart

Hospital visit recap

I went to the hospital Monday night for severe chest pain and shortness of breath. My blood pressure was dangerously high, and remained so throughout the first night. I was given a regimen of aspirin, blood thinners, and nitro paste to lower my blood pressure and prevent me from actually having a heart attack. Given my existing congestive heart failure, that’s exactly what I thought was happening. Thankfully, tests later confirmed it wasn’t that at all. Still, very scary stuff my friends.

My cardiologist came into the ER before I was admitted, was thinking he should go ahead and perform a heart catheterization, and was going to do that on Wednesday. I told the doctor that I wanted them to exhaust every other possible scenario before they did a heart cath. There was no way they were cutting on me unless it was absolutely necessary. So he agreed, and said we would see how tests went on Tuesday, and make a decision on how to proceed Tuesday night. So I went ahead and had my mother drive up to Fort Wayne from Louisville, so she would be here no matter what they decided. The rest of Monday night was spent having chest x-rays and CT scans done, as well as a ton of blood drawn for various tests. I may have gotten 2 hours of sleep that night.

Breakfast was cut short Tuesday morning as they wanted to do an Echocardiogram. Let me tell you, they hurt me badly with that. If you want to know what it’s like to be stabbed in the chest, without actually breaking the skin, this procedure is about as close to that experience as it gets. Five days later, my chest still hurts from that damn thing.

So, the cardiologist comes in Tuesday night, to discuss the results from the days tests, and tells me that the x-rays and CT scans indicated that I have a hiatal hernia. News to me; had no clue that was there or what it was even. So, the cardiologist decides to call in a GI specialist to check me out, and see if there’s anything else going on in my stomach, etc… If the results from that round of testing turned up something, then we wouldn’t do the heart cath. If the tests were negative, well, you know… a discovery channel special titled “Journey to the Center of Mike’s Heart”. I know that sounds fascinating to some, but the thought of not making it through that scared the hell out of me. I’m happy to say good sense prevailed and that special was canceled. But, they came up with another one, “A look inside Mike’s Stomach”.

Wednesday afternoon, the GI doctor decided to do an Endoscopy on me. Now for those of you who don’t know what that is, that’s where they stick a thin tube with a camera on the end down your throat and into your stomach. They put you to sleep for it, and you really don’t feel a thing. Still a scary thing to think about though.

Well, during that procedure, they found the beginnings of two ulcers, some acid reflux damage, and determined that I have a condition called Gastritis. Look it up if you’d like. The gist of it is all of those combined can cause the same kind of pain a heart attack does, and is what lead me to feel so bad. The good thing is it can be treated with medications. Yep, you guessed it, even more pills added to my regimen now. I was at 13 pills a day when I posted my forum discussion last week. Now it’s up to about 20.

My cardiologist did give me another bit of encouraging news. All of the tests indicated that my heart has actually gotten about 5% stronger since the last time I was checked. The heart is now functioning at 40%, instead of 35%. Not a big change, but any improvement is awesome in my book.

So yeah, that’s what’s been going on with me. I’m so glad to be at home, and have actually been taking it easy since I got home. I’ll be going back to work tomorrow night, and I’ll be resuming the rest of my normal routine as I feel like it.

Thanks to all of you who have sent prayers and well wishes my way. I really can’t tell you all how much I appreciate them. They’ve helped more than you’ll ever know.

Keep Fighting It, and Rock On!

Living with a Confusing Pancreas and a Broken Heart at age 36 #Diabetes #LADA #CongestiveHeartFailure. #MakeDiabetesVisible Creator, #ALittleHeartCanDoBigThings Creator, Advocate, Blogger, Nature Photographer.