20 March 2012

Deteriorating Health

So, I haven't been updating like I wanted to, and in part that's due to anxiety over my endo appointment last week and in part due to the results of the endo appointment from last week.

Let's back up a bit.

I recently moved after finishing my undergrad, and so I now I'm with my husband. He lived three hours away for a semester while I finished and he worked. I really only saw a doctor once or twice a year while in college. My endo from back home is in the process (or, so it seems) of transferring his practice to the hospital, and when I did visit when I went home, I, along with the other "seasoned veterans", got to go to the new assistant. I guess our job was to show this new assistant how the diabetes game is played.

So, I hadn't really had a seasoned doctor at a dr appointment in about five years. Oh, sure. I had the labs done, but nothing was really done about the results. I mean, what are they going to do? Yell at me across the country? They're busy; I'm busy. We'll maybe discuss the next time I see them...in a year.

Anywho, I scheduled doctors’ appointments (yes, plural. I am so proud of myself.) after I got back home from winter break. I was not in good shape. Senior design had stressed me. Living away from my husband stressed me. And all those medical things that I probably should have been more aggressive about treating stressed me. All my medical problems were kicking my butt.

As I said to my mom on the phone, "Well, senior design is bad for your health, and I have the lab work to prove it."

I was going in last week for a follow up endo appointment. I'd been there twice before. Once to establish myself as a patient (and get prescriptions...) and once to have a test done.

That first visit was the first time in (and I kid you not) 6 years that a doctor had listened to my entire list of symptoms with my heart problems. Turns out, when you have multiple symptoms that occur at the same time, they tend to be linked!

Anywho, at that first appointment I got to go back a week later and get injected with radioactive goo so they could watch my heart work. Oh my goodness, that was like the most boring hour ever, and I still don't have super powers.

Last week I got to go in for my blood test results (the usual HbA1c, thyroid, kidney, blood count, vitamin D, etc.) and the results from the radioactive goo test.

All my blood work came back...not good. At least my thyroid is working.

As far as the heart stuff, here's a picture of a heart:




Wikipedia is awesome for this stuff.

Here's a picture of what my heart thinks is totally cool:



I am a paint artist. But in all seriousness, that's not supposed to happen. That's apparently really bad for your heart. Your heart muscle isn't supposed to just harden and shrink your ventricles. You are apparently not supposed to be able to see the septum (the wall between the ventricles) on the scan. You are also, not supposed to have your heart be inefficient. That's also pretty bad. See, when the muscle wall hardens and the ventricles shrink, it's more difficult to pump blood around your body and for each beat, you get less blood going, because the chambers are smaller.

So, this is all super-duper bad. How do I know? Because I looked on webmd, and this is what it told me:

Can you see that properly? Sudden death is a symptom. It's not like "Oh, and you may eventually die, like all people". It's like "Oh, we have people as young as you on occasion drop dead from this, and this leads to a posthumous diagnosis! Aren't we clever?"

I'm not going to lie. I know webmd and mayoclinic often give you the worst case scenario ("Oh, I sneezed! Do I have a cold?" "No. You have brain cancer and five minutes to live!"), but seeing that scared the ever living stuffing out of me.

I've fainted at the top of a flight of stairs before (someone caught me before plummeting to my doom). I've nearly fainted while driving (I managed to pull over). During both of these I felt like someone was taking a butcher knife to my chest.

I've had nights where I can't sleep because that pain is so terrible, and nothing makes it go away.

I've had days where I can't do anything because even though I've just woken up, my pulse is around 200 and I feel like I just ran 5 marathons.

I've had one day where I learned not to take Dayquil, because it makes my pulse shoot up to about 300.

At least it's a diagnosis, right?

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