ouch my broken heart

So yeah…my health.

For the last month I’ve been battling a cold/chesty cough/chest infection and at the beginning of last week I finished my course of antibiotics and most of it cleared up leaving me with an occasional dry cough that felt more like I’d cut my throat and the healing was itchy and causing the cough rather than the remnants of the infection.I felt that good that on Monday night we went for a cycle to my parents and on Tuesday I cycled to and from work. At no point did I feel I’d over done it and actually felt really good about it all.

Then I lay down to go to bed on Tuesday night. It hurt to lay down. It hurt to sit up. When I wasn’t lying down it felt like someone was trying to crush my throat and when I was on my back it was if someone was sitting on my chest. It didn’t hurt that much to be honest it was more the tightness that worried me. What did hurt though was when I breathed in and out. It was fine until a certain point then it became unbearable. Vonnie said I was being a drama queen and I sort of believed her but at teh back of my mind was the thought that if it didn’t get any better by 4am I’d go to A&E there and then. I finally managed to get some sleep after finding some painkillers but if I moved from the one position I found that was comfy then I’d wake up in pain again.

I’d told Vonnie I’d go to A&E if it didn’t get any better by lunchtime but when I got off the bus its was just as bad as it was during the night. A quick text to Vonnie to say I was going earlier than expected and instead of walking across the road to work I walked into A&E instead. Sometimes it’s quite handy having the local hospital across the road from your office! I went in expecting them to say I had pulled a muscle and I’d be back in work within the hour. I got to the desk and told then of my chest pains and my difficulty breathing only to see the 4 kids that came in behind me with strained joints get taken first. It took me a few hours to realise they were being taken into the room we normally go into when the kids have to go to A&E and they were waiting for space to come up in the treatment rooms for me. I’d walked in of my own accord so those that came in via the ambulance got in ahead of me. I didn’t thing like that at the time… Vonnie also found out that they refer to the room I was eventually taken into as Resus which certainly didn’t worry her when she asked where I was…

I was taken in, prodded, questioned and hooked up to a monitor. An IV thingie was stuck in the back of my hand so I could get morphine injected and I was given O2 as well as a couple of ECG’s. Just as the morphine kicked in my mum turned up and before I was whisked away for a chest X-ray I was told by a nurse that Vonnie had called. At this point I’d been told it was probably pericarditis and that I might need to stay over night depending on what the X-ray showed. What Vonnie was told however was that my ECG showed signs of a mild heart attack and that I was definitely staying overnight. Nice of them to a)give incorrect info to loved ones and b)to give that sort of info out over the phone in the first place. Anyway by now the morphine felt very good and I’d had my xray and didn’t even question how my brother had got to the hospital never mind how he’d managed to get from Hamilton in about 3 minutes flat. Vonnie turned up to find me with tubes and wires and all sorts stuck to me and despite my smiles looked really worried. She was much relieved to find out that despite the place being called Resus I wasn’t in need of any and that I hadn’t actually had a heart attack.

After several hours of trying to find me a bed, the hospital had about 2 spare at this point, I was moved up to the ward. It just so happened the 2 spare where in the same room and they the other was soon filled up. I shared that room with a guy that just sat stairing at the wall all day or sleeping and a guy that had had a stroke and spent the day pissing into bottles or shitting in a bag. Not long after I got there the other spare bed was filled by a wee guy with a huge O2 mask on that I was convinced wasn’t going to see it through the night. I’d been hyperventilating when I came in thanks to the pain when I took deep breaths but this guy was something else. He was up at 50-60 breaths per minute, his BP topped out at 240/168 and they could only find one place they could both draw blood from and put an IV into as his arms and legs were that swollen. He was really struggling and his alarms were going off all night. They also had a couple of floor fans on him trying to keep his temp down. So between my pain/discomfort I also had the fans, the alarms, the guys breathing and the stroke guys toilet habits keeping me awake almost all night.

One thing I’ll say though is they like to keep you fed. From the moment I got ont he ward until I left just before noon I think they must have gave me four meals! And thats not including tea and biscuits.

So anyway here I am now trying to find things that I can do that won’t wind up Vonnie or kill me. I’ll likely be off work for at least a week and depending on how I do at my GP’s on tuesday I may be off for another week as well. Just going to the shops knackers me out thanks to my breathing!

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