Am I having a heart attack?
As women we tend to downplay our health and ignore issues when the come up. Make your health a priority and trust your instincts.
As most of you know, last week I got to spend some time in the hospital. First off, I am seemingly fine. But I felt it important to share my experience in case something like this happens to you.
I was sound asleep when I was abruptly woken with a burning, stabbing pain in my chest. I’m a pro when it comes to anxiety and panic attacks so I knew this was very different. I was scared at what this was and I waited a couple hours before I woke my husband to tell him what was going on. The pain was very different than anything I’ve ever experienced. After talking with my friend, she insisted I go to the doctor. Especially since we were suppose to be getting on a plane in just a couple of days.
Long story short, I went to Urgent Care. There I had ST depressions on my EKG and my blood work showed an elevated Troponin level. I was sent to the ER by ambulance where the could do further testing to rule out a blood clot in my lung or further heart damage. After having three rounds of Nitroglycerin, I was feeling much better. Basically, what my test showed was something was going on with my heart, and because the pain stopped with the Nitro, that was telling that it was definitely not an anxiety attack.
What was it?
We still don’t know what caused my heart to act up. They admitted me for observation and kept me there to do a stress test, echocardiogram, and a CT. All of my tests were negative. We’re now just trying to figure out those red flags so it doesn’t happen again. I’ll be visiting cardiology in the weeks to come and I’ll keep you posted on anything new.
The one thing I want to stress is that you shouldn’t be embarrassed about what people think. I was worried that there wasn’t anything wrong and I had to put everyone out to take care of me. I didn’t respond to messages coming in because I didn’t have any answers. Women in general have a tendency to downplay anything that is wrong or ignore their symptoms completely. I found myself apologizing over and over to every nurse, doctor, and tech that came into my room. Every single one of them said I did the right thing by coming in when I did.
So, listen to your bodies ladies (and gents.) Know that your instincts are usually right and don’t be afraid to talk about it.
Note: I want to thank my best friends. My husband for holding my hand and wiping away the tears when I was scared that I was going to die (he knew I wasn’t.) And Emelia for staying the night with me in the hospital. I know the vinyl couch and chair wasn’t comfortable. And my mom as always, for always stepping in when needed.