My Latest Adventure Part Two

Sorry there has been a bit of a gap between postings. I had hoped to write part two yesterday but I was so exhausted I only briefly went on the lap top yesterday. Basically out of 24 hours I was awake for 8 and out of bed two. Thank goodness hubby took the day off work yesterday to look after me I was fit for nothing.

So last night I slept for 13-14 hours, I would love to report I woke up feeling as fresh as a daisy but I didn’t, I felt like an extra in the movie night of the living dead. I thought a cup of tea would wake me up, it didn’t! I am actually more awake at 2030 than I have been all day! I hope I can still sleep tonight.

I just need to say a quick thank you to the following people for their messages making sure I was OK, ASL, SE, YC, EG, AF, AK, TMT, JH, ST Rachel and Hilary (and probably a few others that I have managed to forget for which I am sorry). I am OK I am just doing a Rip Van Winkle impersonation at the moment!

I can’t remember if I told you that they asked – the ambulance crew- if I had been taking elicit substances! I did have a chuckle if I had been doing coke or speed I would be a good deal thinner than I am. I also got asked if I had drunk a lot of coffee or red bull. All perfectly reasonable questions and logical but I can no longer drink coffee as it makes me sick, I have no interest in drinking red bull and I limit the amount of cola I drink as that makes my tummy hurt. So there were no obvious reasons for my spontaneous tachycardia.

In Majors I was monitored continuously my heart rate dropped below the official 100bpm that signifies tachycardia and stayed in the 90’s which is still too fast but is considered the top end of normal. Any movement even just flicking my hair out of my eyes was making it jump to 110 bpm. Because I was on complete bed rest I knew that my heart would slow down of its own accord, that’s fine but what do you do when you get home? Life is already severely limited for me I don’t want to become completely bed bound.

I had a chest X ray and that was clear and my bloods all came back clear for infection. So with the clear ECG there was no obvious reason for my heart to decide to disco dance. Thank fully being confined to bed was easing the chest pain. The only pain I had was my arm being crushed every time the automated blood pressure cuff went off. My blood vessels are so fragile I have vertical lines of blood blisters where the cuff has been.

At around 1630 I got admitted onto a ward, not a good one. Its called the emergency medical unit. Basically a dumping ground for people too sick to be released but not sick enough to get straight onto a specialist ward. I was the youngest person there by about 40-50 years.

 As I was wheeled to my bay the woman next door told me to “F**king clear off” and started throwing her personal belongings at me. She obviously was suffering from some sort of dementia, normally I would have been sympathetic and patient but I was feeling lousy and didn’t want to play. I turned to the nurse and said “If I am next door to that all night I will abscond” and I meant it. The woman started throwing the bed side curtain at me and swearing again. I am not proud to say but I lost my rag with her, I felt dreadful, the stress of being next to this abusive woman was sending my heart into the 130bpm range.

 I waited until the nurses left and lent forward and had a few very stern words with her, along the lines of throw anything else at me and I will smack you one. It was a bit more colourful than that and I am a bit ashamed I spoke to her like that but I could see she was eyeing up her folder of nursing notes as her next missile and that would have hurt! My talking to her actually worked and she went to sleep. Around 30 minutes later an ambulance crew came to her and packed her up taking her to the nursing home. As she left the ward she turned the air blue with her swearing!

Just as I thought it would be a bit quieter a woman called Una, who was in the bed diagonally across from mine came up sat on the end of the bed and asked me what train I was waiting for. I started laughing as I hadn’t been expecting that one and told her it was the London bound one. She told me she had been waiting for a train for ages and that her husband would be worrying about where she was. She was all over the place as some of the time she said she was 7 years old and that I was an old lady and then the next minute she was talking about her husband. She wasn’t aggressive or violent she was just confused and scared. I could cope with that, I couldn’t cope with things being thrown at me when I was strapped up to a monitor and couldn’t move.

I don’t know what is happening with this post but this is the third time I have had to edit it due to disappearing paragraphs!

To cut a long story short Una decided to pretend to take her meds and then throw them behind her bed when the nurses and care assistants left. I informed the nursing staff about what she was doing. When they moved her bed they found a pile of pills on the floor.

Una wasn’t aware that I was the one that had given the game away or she didn’t appear to realise. I didn’t hide the fact that I was telling the nurses. They were much more diligent when they gave her the replacement tablet. She was observed taking the tablet and then made to open her mouth and lift up her tongue. I have the feeling that Una was just terribly lonely, every time she had the opportunity to get some attention she went for it. She refused to eat so one of the nurses fed her, she refused to drink so a nurse helped her drink. She was capable of doing both, how do I know? I watched her help a very ill lady by feeding her and helping her drink. What ever her motivations Una was fundamentally a nice little old lady and a bit of a wily old bird. It was entertaining.

By 1900 I had had enough. I saw a Junior Dr and explained to her I felt fine and that I should be discharged as they would do nothing over night other than observe me and release me in the morning. I told her I could do the observations myself and that they should refer me as an outpatient to cardiology to have a Holter Monitor fitted. She seemed quite amused that I came up with my own treatment plan, but I knew that would be the only way I was going to get discharged! Within a few minutes her boss came over and he said he agreed with my plan and that I could go. He then spent 20 minutes talking to me about autonomic dysfunction, he also told me he felt that I had ocular myasthenia gravis. I had met this guy in 2009 and he wasn’t particularly pleasant towards me, he was obviously under the impression that there was nothing wrong with me. Now I have a diagnosis, it maybe one that he had never heard of and he had to google, I am a proper patient. He informed me that he thought I had wide spread problems with my autonomic nervous system. I was quite taken back as normally the Dr’s I deal with treat me with such disdain and with a complete lack of respect. This trip to hospital had been a bit of an eye opener!

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2 thoughts on “My Latest Adventure Part Two

  1. Hi Rachel .. well in some ways it sounds like a bit of success story – at least the doctor started seeing things your way.

    Crumbs – and I think I have challenges (ant like minor – compared to yours and absolutely nothing remotely serious) .. I've been in those wards with my Mum .. but relatively we've been lucky.

    Look after yourself .. with thoughts Hilary

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  2. Thank you Hilary. I am sorry I haven't responded to your comment before.

    It was such a relief to finally have people in the medical profession take me seriously. They may not know the condition but they were all willing to learn and that's a start.

    Rach xx

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