Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A midnight awakening, an ambulance ride, & a short stay (thank God) at a hospital

I know that it's Wednesday & this is supposed to be the day I post my "Weekly Weight Update."  It's also the day I'm supposed to post my Half-Way Giveaway winner.  However, these things are going to have to wait until tomorrow.

I have something called paroxysmal atrial fibrillation which basically means that every so often my heart beat races way too fast.  My brother has this same ailment & so did my father.  I was diagnosed in 2004 & have been on the same medication ever since which has served me well unless I have missed a few doses (which happened in May without my realizing it) or during a time of immense stress (which happened in 2008 when my father passed away) but most of the time it will happen for no reason whatsoever.  This has been a very rare occurrence since starting my medication.  Early this morning at 12:25 it happened again although these past 2 times it's been rather odd ... not just a very fast beat but very irregular as well.  I waited the suggested 20 minutes to see if it would go away, then told John we had to go to the ER.  Usually they give me an IV of something, I convert back to regular heart rhythm, & I get to come home.  The ER staffers did not seem to want to check their records from May to see what it was they gave me then so they gave me a shot of something which didn't do much good at all.  They tried to contact my doctor & couldn't get hold of him but did get hold of one of his colleagues who said they needed to send me to a hospital in Lexington since that's where my doctor has privileges.  Who knew he didn't have them here since I see him at his office 10 miles away?  They insisted they had to put me in an ambulance & I got the ride of my life to Lexington where they admitted me to the hospital.  While in the ambulance I converted back to regular rhythm but try as I might I couldn't convince the guys to take me back home.  They admitted me to the Lexington hospital at 4:30 a.m. where I was poked & prodded & had various tests administered by a parade of nurses & technicians.  I met with my doctor's nurse practitioner who would win the Academy Award for Bedside Manner if there was such a thing.  He said the doctor would probably let me go home later in the morning but I would need to wait until they finished their testing to make sure.  He said they might want to tweak my medication a bit, add another one to it, or just wait to see if this happens again before doing anything like that.

I continued to do fine.  They finished all their tests.  I kept waiting for my doctor to show up.  At noon a strange foreign doctor walked into my room.  His bedside manner ... well, let's just say he didn't have any.  He asked how I was doing.  I wondered who this stranger was but answered that I was fine.  He started speaking in some unintelligible language & I tried to follow.  From what I thought I was understanding, he was telling me about a medication they wanted to start me on & how I would need to take some other medication first before seeing if I could tolerate the first one.  I'm already taking that medication & told him I've been "tolerating it" for about 20 years now!  Didn't phase him.  He just asked "Do you have any questions?"  I was in such shock I said no, then as he was leaving I said "Wait!  Can I go home?" & he said yes so 2 hours later after all the paperwork was done I got to leave.

I was exhausted after the 2 hours of sleep I had last night before the a-fib started.  Poor John didn't have any sleep at all but managed to pass out a couple times in my hospital room & out in the car.  We made it home & literally fell into bed where we slept until the phone rang ... the hospital telling me I needed to have some blood tests done here (thank goodness) on Friday.  I then decided I'd better make something to eat & now here I am relating this all to you.

I'm a bit perturbed that my own doctor didn't come to see me.  Beings that if this happens again I will face another ambulance ride to the Lexington hospital I am going to try to find a cardiologist who works with the local hospital.

And there you have it.  I have no idea what I weigh today so I can't post my update & I haven't drawn for the giveaway yet but I promise I will do both these things tomorrow.  For now a hot cup of tea, a nice shower, & an early bedtime sounds pretty good to me.


Angela said...

Shirlee, So glad your heart went back to its regular rhythm and you are better. I know this can be frightening as I have a cousin that I have been with when this has happened to her. Several times she has ended up in the ER and then sometime its goes back on its on. You take care and take it easy. So glad you are home. Tuck in early and get some good sleep.

Anonymous said...


That has to be scary..glad you are ok, doctors can be so aggravating. Are you talking Lexington KY?? Hubby has family in KY, Campbellsville..Take care of yourself...get a good rest tonight.

earlene said...

OMG what a scare.I hope they get you regulated. I have a pvc when my heart beats funny and skips a beat when it happens kinda scary but will stop as quick as it started.
Take care Shirlee

Trace4J said...

((( BIG HUGS))) And to think I was wondering why you didnt comment on my blog today about my vitamins? Poor you!
Praying for you friend

A Primitive Homestead said...

As I read your post title I wispered a prayer for you right away. My family doctor can not doctor at the hospital 5 minutes down the road from his office. Both the closets to my home. This sucks. Our local hospital has no birthing center either. The nearest hospitals to deliver is 40 to 50 minutes away. I am glad you are home. I am sure this is very scary for you. Prayers lifted for you friend. Blessings!

Diane said...

So glad to hear that everything is better Shirlee.

Health is such a finicky thing, but we must listen to our bodies. Rest, relax and take care.