Tuesday, January 12, 2010
January Journal day 12 - Stress Test
Today I had a new experience. Another chapter in my book of tests. Last September I had an episode where I was sure I was having a heart attack. After a visit to the E.R. I was assured I had not had a heart attack. Since then I have had one other day where my left arm and neck ached so I thought maybe, maybe. I went to bed instead (I don't recommend this). I've had a neck MRI, a brain MRI, an EMG on the left arm and hand (That hurt!) and now today I had a nuclear stress test. As I have degenerative joint disease in my knees and a bulging disc in my lower back I was concerned to say the least. I did not know if I would be able to walk on the treadmill at the level and speed they would need. I found out this test had been scheduled by receiving a letter in the mail with date, time and instructions. The letter stated I may have medication injected to stress the heart if I could not manage the treadmill. What?!
My doctor has a daughter who is a doctor. She performed the test. As I have asthma and the medication used to stress the heart has a side effect, it causes asthmatics to have an attack she wanted me to try the treadmill test. I agreed, of course. Nothing scares me more than not being able to breath. My attacks are worsened by the fact that once they start I panic. Many panic attacks are confused for asthma attacks and vice versa.
I am so pleased right now as I did it. The target heart rate they wanted to aim for was 145. I made it to 140 and was having a real hard time with pain in right knee and left calf and my breathing was labored. Plus my blood pressure was really high. It started out high today for some reason. LOL! They injected the contrast into my hand at about 143, close enough. Dr. Rhonda has a really good manner, a chip off the old block as they might say. I was comfortable with both her and the two techs that were attending me. I was even able to walk the one minute cool down. She said most do 2 or 3 but she thought one would be enough. Then I got to sit for awhile and they gave me a glass of water and cheese crackers. Wasn't that nice of them?!
After 30 ,minutes I was placed on a machine to have images taken of my heart. They said the contrast would show any problems with blood flow in or out of the chambers. Oh and Dr. Rhonda said the EKG being taken while I was on the treadmill looked good. I go back tomorrow morning for resting images. They will inject me again and then I stay still for 30 minutes and then they take the images. Easy! I should have the results within the week.
So please pray that everything turns out ok, or if there is something, that there will be an easy fix.
I did a journal page with a heart and words today. Misty Mawn's prompt for this week is to become a favorite artist. I wanted a big heart on this red and yellow page and to journal about todays event with words. A reminder to have a calm heart, mind and soul. To be calm is good for my asthma and my anxiety attacks and my heart aka blood pressure. So I created with my day in mind. Then I remembered that Andy Warhol did a lot of word art. So today I am Andy Warhol.
Be happy, Be Healthy, Be Yourself (Or your favorite artist for a day),