Thursday 14 March 2013

What Started Out As A Normal Day........

I spent yesterday afternoon though to 10.30pm in the emergency short stay unit at the Alfred Hospital.  What started off as a normal day ended in a bit of drama I guess you'd call it.....well if it is my life it's always a bit of drama.

I left for work as normal at 1.30pm, sat down in my car to put the keys in the ignition and the most unimaginable pain struck across the right side of my chest, so sharp I could feel it right through to my back and radiating through my right shoulder and blade.....the pain was so sudden and so intense that it took my breath away....It felt like a sledgehammer had just been swung at me and completely winded me.....I sat there for around 3 minutes trying to work out what it was....don't ask me why I sat there I just did.

The pain did subside and my breathing did return to some sort of normal, so I decided to continue my journey to work....I drove around 3 kilometres down the road, and something made me turn back and go home to my GP.  My GP is located 4 doors down from my apartment turning up there to find a note on his door that he has had to shut the surgery due to ill health certainly wasn't what I was expecting.  Big hello and hope you're ok to Dr O'Bryan.

With a thumping pain still in my chest, albeit not as severe as it was, I instinctively thought emergency at The Alfred.....a short 3 minute drive from my place......I did think about calling an ambulance, but I'm part of the statistics that show  a woman will call an ambulance for someone else, but highly unlikely she'll call one for herself....that's me.....and I just didn't want all the fuss!!

Chest pain seems to get some sort of priority at the emergency section but after being looked over by a admissions nurse, she seemed to be satisfied, that I wasn't having a heart attack and I could take my turn in the wait queue like everyone else......If I don't end up with some sort of cold, flu, bronchitis from being coughed over by every down and out that came in on an ambulance stretcher and was left in the corridor,  I'll be very lucky....They do generally say you go into hospital with one thing but come out with something else!!

Anyway after being hooked up to ECG.....and let me tell you at least I had brand new knickers on.....phew, because your modesty just goes out the window, and blood taken, and my blood pressure reading taken every 30 minutes and one of those little nitroglycerin tablets that goes under your tongue to dilate your heart arteries, with the side effect headache that goes with it!! and one of those dinky little pulse readers on my fingers and several chest x-rays, I settled in for a stay of 8 hours.

Not the most relaxing 8 hours I've spent, and several times I cursed myself that I hadn't brought my knitting or a book with me, although the comings and goings of a hospital are quite entertaining to say the least.

Anyway the outcome of all of this is that there is nothing wrong with my heart....albeit slightly elevated blood pressure readings and a slightly excessive beating heart....put down to the stress of the situation and the fact that I was still in some sort of discomfort with pain but nothing that they thought was of any worry....But something that they did find in my blood work results is the possibility of a blood clot in my leg and my lungs.....not uncommon in itself, but not something they would expect for a person of my age.  Normally these sort of irregularities will show up in people that are bed bound, immobile, pregnant, recovering from surgery of a hip or knee replacement....not a normal mobile, active person that I consider myself to be.

So basically if one of my leg swells, and not the normal swelling of both feet from say the heat, but we are talking one leg, painful, red skin surrounding the swelling and or shortness of breath.....I do need to call an ambulance....the possibility of a pulmonary embolism is real.  As the blood test only came back with a minor abnormality they've sent me back to my GP to deal with this so fingers crossed, it's not a huge deal, although anything to do with your health I guess no matter how big or small is a huge deal.

Funnily enough something I will need to discuss with a GP, I'm now on the hunt for a new one.... Having had blood tests prior to starting dover & madden for other matters and nothing like this showing up in my blood work results, and now working dover & madden where I can sit down knitting for long periods of time, I'm interested to know if all this sitting has caused this or it is just something that is in my make up and it's entirely coincidental.....It's got me thinking, because there are often long days of work, where I do end up with quite swollen feet after a day of sitting down for thought and possibly a little worrying for me.....and it's not like I sit there all day, up, down, to the kitchen, to the computer etc etc.

Anyway that was my day, not the way I expected it to end, but I'm at home today, it's amazing how tired you feel after spending the day at a hospital, either as a patient or just visiting.   I also guess that some things happen for a reason, they have no explanation as to my chest pain other that they believe it was muscular and it will just clear itself, but it did bring to light a potential serious situation elsewhere, so in that sense it wasn't really a wasted day!!

Now to find that new doctor.

I'll keep you posted on the outcome.

Vic x


  1. Vicki, how scary for you! I've had a pulmonary embolus (at age 30) and have lived to tell the tale, but it was very frightening at the time!

  2. I hope you are feeling better. A very scary experience. Take care of yourself.

  3. What a day you've had! Good for you for getting to the hospital!

  4. Oh my goodness, what a fright you must have had. Glad you are ok and you have been forewarned of potential problems. xxx

  5. Oh Vicki - you poor thing. What a horrid day. Here's to finding an awesome doctor and to taking good care of yourself.

    Much love xx

  6. goodness, how scary. glad all is ok, and that you at least drove yourself to the hospital. will be interested to hear what that new doctor says too!

  7. Glad you are feeling ok Vicki,
    Seems knitting might be a dangerous business!
    You did not have a wayward needle stuck in a piece of clothing did you? :)
    Take care

  8. That must have been a frightening ordeal Vicki. Hope you find a great Doctor soon that can help you with any questions you have and that you don't have to deal with the potential risks involved with clots. Take care lovely.
    Tammi x


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