Friday, November 11, 2011


Over the weekend, I noticed that there was a heaviness in my chest and I was short of breath.  Since my surgery involved the heart, I thought it was best to be on the safe side.  I also noticed a small knot forming in my groin where they inserted the sheath for the heart cath procedure.  So while Vol Fan was in surgery, I put a call in to my cardiologist.  When they called me back, they agreed that it would be better to err on the side of safety and scheduled an appointment for me on Tuesday morning.

I convinced Vol Fan to stay home and take some pain meds while his Mom and I went for the tests.  It was going to be no big deal.  Tests.  Consult with doctor.  Home.  Easy peasy.

We arrived at 9am for my first test - an echocardiogram.  The echo is basically an ultrasound of your heart.  It only took about a half an hour and then I was sent to the lab to have blood drawn for a CBC panel.  Then we went to wait for the ultrasound on the veins in my leg.  Unfortunately, I did not have an appointment so they were working me in.  So we sat.  And sat.  And sat.  And sat.

And sat.  And sat.

About 3pm, I received a call from the nurse practitioner in my cardiologist's office.  Since the wait for the ultrasound was taking so long, she thought it would be best if she checked the area and decide whether we wanted to continue to wait.  She didn't think the area felt bad and the results of my echo and bloodwork were good.  So she was teetering on just sending me home.  About that time, my doctor was called into an emergency surgery so we had time to waste before I could see him.  So back to the ultrasound. 

Lo, and behold - I had a clot in the main femoral vein of my left leg.  And it had a spouse in another vein in the same leg! 

That meant I was admitted into the hospital to be put on a heparin IV.  I would also be having a CT scan to make sure the clots had not procreated and sent a baby to my lung or heart!  They had not but it was discovered that I had pneumonia in my right lung.  Crazy, right?

Once in my room, blood was drawn to be tested to make sure the clotting isn't a genetic issue rather than a fluke.  I was hooked to the IV and the heparin bolus was started.  Heparin is not a fun thing to have to be on.  To get you in the 'therapeutic' range (meaning your blood is thin enough), they give added injections in the IV line and test your blood every 4 hours.  Seriously not a fun thing!

Fast forward to yesterday, the heparin finally reached a therapeutic range.  We were able to be sent home on a blood thinner shot that Vol Fan has to give to me twice daily until the coumadin (blood thinner in a pill form) reaches the 'therapeutic' range in my system.  And I'm on antibiotics for the pneumonia!

Let the healing begin!

This last week has been absolutely nuts.  We are SO ready to step off this roller coaster!!


Lisa said...

"Holy Cow" is right! So glad that's overwith & I hope the rest of the year you are NOT in the hospital. ;-)

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Oh Lori, Your situation is different from mine ---but there are similarities in that things kept happening to both of us.

I'm like you... I want healing... I want to feel like ME again... Will it ever happen???? I hope so...

Hope things settle down for you and VolFan now.. You both have gone through ENOUGH.

God Bless.

Nelson's Mama said...

Don't you just have to wonder at the wisdom and thought processes of the medical world - even the top notch ones?

You know they had to be thinking possible clot, yet they let you sit and sit and sit and sit and sit, yet not treat you...that absolutely amazes me.

I'm so happy your okay and this had a good ending!! Take care, girl!

Snooty Primadona said...

Nuts doesn't even begin to describe your week! WTH? I remember when our daughter had a blood clot in her leg & since her doctor in L.A. didn't see it, she flew home on a plane for Christmas, which is about as dangerous as it gets for someone with a clot.

SD had to give herself shots in the stomach for many weeks and it was like 6 months before she was all the way back to normal. Therefore, I somewhat know what you're going through.

Anyway, thank God your doctor found it, right? God speed to wellness my friend...