Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Matters of the Heart

Sorry to disappoint if you came here hoping to read about a new romance, but it's about my old ticker.

Last week I had a funny episode (peculiar, not ha ha). I could feel my heart beating incredibly fast - I've been having palpitations on and off for quite a while now - but then, unusually, I felt a sudden griping pain in my chest. It did momentarily cross my mind that this might be what it feels like to have a heart attack, only it would be much worse. But it did concern me enough to make an appointment to see my doctor.

I had my appointment with the doctor yesterday, and it unsettled me a little bit. It became a bit of a farce with him asking me to tap out the beat of my heart on the desk, then him tapping out another rhythm to compare. We then both spontaneously started tapping out a tune and saying "I'll name that tune in one". Well, you had to be there.
Anyhow, I had expected him to tell me it was nothing at all to worry about and to put my mind at rest, but he didn't exactly do that. He said he thought it might be something called Supraventrical Tachycardia or SVT which I vaguely understood (I knew all those years of watching ER would come in useful in the end) and he sent me to the hospital to have some blood tests and an ECG. Blooming 'eck!

I must admit that I felt like a bit of a fraud, because the chest pain hadn't been that bad. And yet here I was lying virtually naked on a bed with several electrodes attached to my various bits and pieces that were connected to a machine making beeping noises. And what's more I hadn't even shaved my legs! Oh, the shame.

It'll be a week or so before I get the results from the tests, but I've been told I might have to wear a heart monitor for 24 hours. This will give them a better picture of what is happening with my heart beat. By all accounts SVT is not life threatening, but until I get the test results I've been told to 'take it easy'. Easier said than done when you have so many different commitments, so I am thinking about making some realistic life changes.
Watch this space.


Anonymous said...

Blimey, notSupermum, that's not fun at all. Hope your mind is put at rest soon.

Audi said...

The heart's health is nothing to take lightly -- I'd rather be the fool who goes to the doctor (unshaven legs and all!) for a non-life threatening condition than the fool who does nothing until it's too late. Hopefully it's nothing -- I'm sending good thoughts your way from the other side of the globe.

that girl? said...

Goodness ... you did the right thing in getting checked out. I hope it all turns out OK... try not to worry - am thinking of you xx

Nicola said...

Captain Underpants had SVT as a preemie and had several instances of 24 hour monitoring. The heart corrected itself in the end and I think it was a preemie thing. But this is a little concerning. Take good care of yourself and keep us posted. I will have my fingers crossed that it all amounts to nothing x

Anonymous said...

Blimey, that doesn't sound too great. I suppose worrying will only make matters worse. Hope you are taking it easy. (Intended to be said in a non-patronising way!)

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Mervat said...

Unshaven legs or not (and believe me, being married to a cardiologist I have heard some real doozies and unshaven legs doesn't even make the top 50!!) good on you for immediately seeking professional advice. Sending good thoughts your way.

lunarossa said...

What a coincidence! I suffer from something called "supraventricular extrasystole" which I think it's rather similar to SVT. It's simply a premature contraction of the heart, but if you don't know what it is, it can be quite scary. I started noticing it approx two years ago just before going on holiday (of course!!!) and I got very scared and started having panic attacks as well! I did all the text and my doctor said that's something rather common that can be trigged by too much activity, coffeine, stress or otherwise lack of activity. I stopped playing tennis and I got better. I will have to stop coffeine as well. But who's going to take away the stress? Anyway, I really hope your results are back soon and you can relax a bit. Wish you all the best. Ciao. A.

Kayleigh said...

Ok, first of all ((((((HUGS))))))...what an experiece!

Years ago I began to have heart palpitations that wouldn't go away...days on end, weeks sometimes, all day long. Of course I had a slew of tests. The diagnosis is something called Mitral Valve Prolapse (MVP for short, which I rather like the intials of, lol) My heart condition is not life-threatening either, tho I do take antibiotics for all invasive procedures, including dental work, to prevent endocarditis. I also avoid adrenaline (via injection, not from excitement)

I wore the heart monitor you spoke of -- if for some reason they don't want you to do that, and this is most important: GET A SECOND OPINION! I think you need to have the complete diagnostic and that monitor is the BEST way to get it, IMO (not a medical person, tho I watch ER too :)

The good news here, the MOST important news, is that this seems to be one of those minor heart glitches and not signs of "the big one" -- still, I'm sure this must be difficult and disconcerting. If you need any info or want to chat, email me, 'kay?

More hugs: ((((((notSupermum))))))

notSupermum said...

Thanks everyone for your comments and concern. I feel fine at the moment, and have been trying to take it easier this week :-)

Antonella and Kayleigh, thanks for sharing your own stories. It's quite sobering how common this sort of thing is.

I'll keep you posted on the test results.

Yummy Mummy said...

I am sorry to read this post so late. I hope everything turned out OK. You are in my thoughts. Not fun at all.


notSupermum said...

YM, thanks - I should get the test results next week. Fingers crossed.