Last Tuesday, I was sitting here on the computer when suddenly the center of my chest hurt like the proverbial elepant sitting on it, and my stomach hurt with knife-like stabs. I sat back in the chair to calm down and slow my breathing. A hot flash enveloped me, and my head began spinning. The hot flash increased with intensity and I stumbled to the freezer to get ice, while the room around me began to spin and get dark.
I put ice on my forehead and wrists, as I had done many times while a teenager, when the monthly fiend would throw my system out of whack.
After fifteen minutes I was fine, and went about my day.
When Mr. Porter came home from work that night, I told him what had happened. “Why didn’t you call me? Why didn’t you call someone?” he asked.
“Because I felt okay.” I didn’t want to bother anyone.
The next morning we agreed I would go to my Primary Care Doctor and get checked over. I got the resident Nurse Specialist who told us to go to the Emergency Room at the hospital.
Here’s where the fun begins. I was brought into a small room, with a cot, where a pit crew took over my body. One took blood, one inserted and IV hookup, one took my temperature, one took my blood pressure–which by the way was normal. I was sitting up, with the back of the cot up for support.
The Nurse Practictioner then asked if I had chest pain. Well I had a little on the left side of my chest. “This will make you feel better,” she said, handing me a nitro-glycerin tablet. “Put it under your tongue.” With that, she left the room.
My chest began hurting again like the previous episode, and I began feeling hot and dizzy. I instinctively was driving to get my head down, and scooting down the bottom of the cot. “Get help,” I said to my husband. He noticed that my blood pressure was 83/35 and my pulse was 47. He went to the desk across the hall from my room, where three 20-something workers were chit-chatting.
“My wife needs help.”
“Well, call your nurse.”
“Can you help me find the nurse?”
“Ring for the nurse on the button.”
“The calling button on the remote.”
“We don’t have a remote.”
“There is one in your room. It’s attached to the wall.”
I imagine at this point the 20-somethings were all rolling their eyes at each other as my husband came back into my room and frantically looked for the remote for the nurse button behind my bed, and a shelf by the back wall. He found it and pressed the button for the nurse.
I confess I don’t remember what happened here. But soon enough, the cot was rolling through the halls, and up the elevator. I was placed in a room next to a woman who was hacking up phlegm. Thankfully the curtain between us was closed. A doctor came in to talk to the hacking woman, and asked what color the phlegm was: beige, green, clear. Okay, HIPAA, I know you are supposed to keep things private, but can’t you also work the other way, so that *I* don’t have to hear things that I don’t want to?
Over the next day and a half, I was subjected to all kinds of fun. I was given radio-active dye and placed into some kind of mod photo taking machine. I was given a stress test. I was unable to get my heart rate up to 144, as I am still recovering from the major surgery of 2 months ago, and remember, I have an artificial hip. So — they gave me a chemical to stress my heart. Oh here we go again, chest pains, can’t breathe, dizzy. But they got the EKG they needed, and then they gave me the “antidote.”
After all the tests and different kinds of pictures, the doctors were happy to tell me that they can find nothing wrong, and that I can go home, and isn’t that just great.
I have a suspiction as to what caused this. I recently started taking estrogen-blocking meds that are supposed to diminish the chances of the cancer returning. (Of course when I called my Oncologist to ask about this, she said she never heard of that kind of problem.)
But then I found this:
So I’m sticking to my theory. And if I have another episode, I will be throwing these pills out the window.