Monday, November 14, 2011

Stress Tests, Rat Poison and Cardioversion

Today ended, hopefully, the saga that began back in August when my annual physical showed an atrial flutter.  That prompted the stress test that I wrote about.  After the stress test the cardiologist determined I need cardioversion, which is just an electric shock to the heart to get the two chambers back in sync with each other.  The biggest problem is that my blood has to be thin enough for the procedure; otherwise there is a risk of a stroke, especially with the blood in the atrium, which has just been pooling there.  So I went on blood thinner, the main ingredient of which is warfarin.  Warfarin is the active ingredient in rat poison.

Anyway, after six weeks of rat poison therapy, today was the big day.  It was an outpatient procedure.  I checked in, got prepped with the IV and electrodes, they ran some anesthesia which got me to that delightful state just where you are almost asleep but barely conscious and the next thing I knew they were asking me how I felt.  My heart is back in a normal rhythm and hopefully this is the last I will need of cardioversion.

I'm hopeful this will take care of the lack of energy I've felt since summer began.  I attributed my lack of desire for exercise to a number of things:  My dad's death, going to Logan almost every week, not having time to exercise regularly and turning 60, which was the worst because there is nothing I can do if my lack of interest is due to age.  But when I learned that my low energy could be due to the fact that my heart was pumping only 75%-80% of the normal amount of blood, it got me excited that this might change things.  I'm cautiously looking forward to being able to ride the Bear Lake Monster century ride next June.

1 comment:

Mindy said...

We better get out riding if you're thinking of the Bear Lake Monster. I will need it, that's for sure!