So today consisted of a few tests I needed to get done before my visit to the cardiologist tomorrow.
You ever have one of those days? You know what I’m speaking of, folks. The day you begin with the greatest of intentions then it goes straight down the crapper from the minute (or my case the hour) you open your eyes.
Today I had totally intended at being up around 7:30 so that the dogs could go outside and play a bit before they had to go into their kennels. I don’t know why I didn’t hear the alarm go off at that time. My eyeballs woke up at it was 8:30.
It doesn’t seem like a big deal but it is a slippery slope my friends. That’s what I am layin down. Anyways, I let the dogs out and rushed to get some carbs in me before this stress test (which was at 10). I made decaf coffee (so bad- eew- but you don’t want caffeine rushing through your veins when it is your heart being tested. So that was my sacrifice).
Here we are required to be present for an appointment 15 minutes prior- to make sure your paperwork is filled out and they can get your charts ready for the doc, etc. So I leave just a bit after 9 thinking that 45 minutes is more than enough time.
I should have just taken the loop for crying out loud. It is longer time wise but considering what I encountered it would have been the fastest route.
What did I encounter?
Pulling out of our neighborhood I get stuck behind a bus. Those nasty city buses they roll around here with the exhaust blowing into my windshield. I passed that no problem though it was a red light so I had to sit behind them for a bit. It slowed me down some but not enough to worry about my buffer.
As I get to the post I have two options. I can either cut through the post at 25 mph or I could go around at 45 mph (read:55). I decided to go around. BIG mistake. They are building a new loop for mainly the military- so that the original loop can be freed up for the good citizens of our city. Rush hour is CRAZY and with an estimated influx of 20,000 troops (and then add their families) the traffic situation wasn’t looking so hot. A private company is paying for it (hello other cities– sometimes it is alright for a private company to contribute to the maintenance of a city. I’se just sayin) and things are moving along at a good pace.
So well that I hadn’t anticipated that they would be working on the access ramps and overpasses. A usual six lane road was narrowed down to two (one comin, one goin). On top of that I get stuck behind not One- not two- not three- but FOUR UPS trucks. Do they turn to take the loop– nope they sure don’t. They say in front of me almost all the way to the hospital. At this point it is around 950.
Five minutes late to check in. Doesn’t seem like much but I have had to reschedule before because I was late. It seemed like there was a party I didn’t know about going on at the hospital. The line going through card check was ridiculously long and of course someone with no ID was trying to get in so that was a bit more of a set back.
Then.. trying to find parking.
There wasn’t any available. All that was left were a couple of the “Expecting Mothers” parking.
I kid you not.
This didn’t make me a happy camper. I drove all over the parking lot just looking for a spot when I saw a red headed lady with a stroller coming out of the hospital. I asked her if I could follow her to her car so that I could have her spot.
So I wait on her, park then start haulin bootay across the parking lot and you want to know what greets me at the door?
It doesn’t really matter what you say because I am about to tell you regardless.
Three very pregnant women are standing IN FRONT OF THE DOOR. Hello! There is a sidewalk people! I would mostly understand if they were chatting or something but they weren’t so there was no reason for them to be in that particular spot.
They just stood there- like pigeons on a power line.
As I braced myself for a fun game of bumper bellies out of the corner of my eye I see another very pregnant woman walking toward the door. I estimate that we are gonna get there at around the same time.
I get to the elevator (where you have to pass maternity section- which is where I will be going on Sunday for my ultrasound) two more come off.
It is like a freaking plague! They were everywhere. This isn’t just me being uber sensitive at all. I was so worried about this stress test and making this appointment than to be sensitive to just a couple of women.
So I get to the 4th floor and a punch to the ute (that would be short for “uterus”).
Cardiology is right next to Labor and Delivery. In fact, the entrance to Cardio comes first so while you wait you can watch all the pregnant people walk by.
Yay! Fun! Not.
So, I am there. It is 5 after 10. There seems to be a problem with the woman waiting in front of me- “whew” I think to myself. They take care of her and its my turn to check in.
Except there isn’t a record of my appointment. Apparently someone was making appointments on Monday and not entering them into the computer. So I call my PCM (primary care manager) and tell her what is going on and she wasn’t very happy to hear it. I hated to call her on her cell but I *need* this appointment for my consult tomorrow. She spoke to someone and apparently lit someone’s behind on fire because they called me soon after for my stress test. That ended up being around10:15 or so. I had plenty of time to catch my breath from rushing.
(Sidenote: Let me just say that if I weren’t married…. There was a yummy intern that looked like someone a gal could get naughty with! Of course I also refer to the post barbershop as the “candyshop” but I digress)
I get all hooked up to this machine. Chatting it up with the doc and the intern. They check my rate and got all quiet.
My resting heartrate was at 144. For my age it shouldn’t be past the 70’s. Mind you they weren’t talking TO me because things need to be reviewed by the cardio doc first (I find this a huge bonus in being at a teaching hospital- glean more information that way). I didn’t catch it all but I heard a snippet of information that had me even more concerned. Something about it not being good that I was already at 85%. Of what I do not know. The guy was facing away from me speaking to the intern. The comment I got was “At least your blood pressure is good”.
Great, but how does that help if my heart is already working so hard without me doing anything but standing there?
So we start the test and my rate goes up to about 180 and fluxes. I don’t exactly know the range but I am sure I’ll find out tomorrow. At the end of the test they are monitoring how my heart reacts and again I don’t hear good things. One of which was something along the lines of if I had been an older female the sections they were looking over would not bode well.
My heart rate stayed around 177 far longer than it should have. It isn’t good when they are looking at the progression chart and shaking their heads.
So I went back out to the waiting room. The echo tech had someone in so I had to wait until they were done. I used the time to try and get the rate down with deep breathing exercises that yummy intern showed me.
So I get called back, change and lay down. She told me that since I’d taken the stress test right before that she would give me about 10 minutes of just laying there- again trying to get my rate down. It didn’t go lower than 120-122.
I must say that echo’s are pretty cool to watch and that I had no idea that such a clear picture could come from so many different angles. I was of course chatting with the tech. She was asking about why I was going for an ultrasound since I had told her I wasn’t pregnant so I told her about our infertility. She was a very sympathetic ear. I guess in the same way that hair dressers and nail techs are LOL. Anyway, the only way I could get my rate below 11o was to hold my breath.
even then 110 isn’t 70 (or in the 70’s)
So I get done and head up to the reception area to see if there was any chance I could get copies before my appointment tomorrow. The woman started to tell me that it would be 3-5 business days but the nurse came in and asked if I were the one with the appointment tomorrow. When I said yes she informed me that my results and copies of the tests would be faxed to the doc before my appointment! So I don’t even have to carry those- just my EKG and Lab results that I got from my PCM. I love that woman. I don’t know who she called or what she said but she certainly pulled through for me on this one.
My father, however, has not.
He has some medical training so I wanted to pass on the info I had grabbed as well as the numbers I knew for sure so that I could have some idea of what would happen tomorrow. The man didn’t answer his phone. So I paged him and tagged it urgent and got nada.
So I left him a voice mail and still nothing.
So if any of you out there in the universe of the interwebs know anything about heart rates that you can share with me I sure would appreciate it. Pretty Please.