Archives for: April 2010
Six weeks after my first ambulance ride to the hospital with heart attack symptoms and the doctors say there’s nothing wrong with me. Now granted, they haven’t got a lot to point to. The average person at my age (51) would have terrible cholesterol, a bad diet, and would be at least 30 lbs. overweight. But thanks to Dr. D’Adamo I have great cholesterol, a fantastic diet, and I’m only about 10 lbs overweight. The heart itself looks very good, no inflammation and no rhythm problems. There’s just a little plaque in one of my arteries near the heart, but no where near enough to do anything about. But my heart still pounds like I’m in crisis anytime it wants to. Sometimes it will happen while I’m just lying in bed or sitting on the couch. Sometimes if there’s a sudden loud noise or someone I’m talking to is very excited. Forget about trying to watch an action movie or listening to music that has a strong bass beat. Those always work to get my heart rate up lately.
Thank goodness I’m good at research and have an interest in health because the process I’ve been through has been very strange. The Doctors would do tests and then put me on a medicine that would skew the test results. Then take the test again and say I was fine. Does it seem strange to test someone’s electrolytes after they’ve been given 3 bags of fluid into their veins? Should you test Epinephrine levels after you’ve given the patient beta blockers (lots of them) which would block that response? Or test hormone levels right after giving the patient a CT scan? I looked them up, all three answers are no! So why did they do it? Is it because they don’t have a cure for what’s wrong with me or is it because I’m working with an HMO and insurance companies are telling the doctors what they can and cannot do? I swear I saw a lot of unsaid words pass behind my Endocrinologist’s eyes.
I did get enough information from the test to determine, for myself, that there is a problem with my Adrenal Glands. I had suspected for at least the last six months that I had Adrenal Fatigue, but I wasn’t responding to the vitamins, salt water, or rest as most people do. In fact, after a few days the salt water made me feel terribly wired, even though my blood pressure was fine or sometimes a little low.
So what am I doing? Well, the Endocrinologist advised me to start taking Estrogen for Menopause and to possibly help with my symptoms. But, with 80 – 90 % of my family dying of strokes and heart attacks I think I’ll pass. My research on the Adrenal glands shows that taking hormones is a very good idea. But I’m starting with bio-identical Progesterone and Phytoestrogen both applied as a cream which enters the system through the skin, bypassing the liver. I’m waiting for the results from a private lab (saliva test) to check my Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, DHEA, and Cortisol (four samples) levels. When I get this test back I might actually know what’s going on. The hormone tests they give you in the hospital, I have found out, are not very reliable or accurate.
I’ve been on the Progesterone (and Phytoestrogen) cream for over a week now and it seems to be making a difference. I can tolerate salt again and the attacks are not as strong as they have been. I’m even going to try to work next week (just six hours a day). Thanks goodness I know what to eat! I finally got my swami just before all this started and I feel really good about my list. Next blog I think I’ll talk about hospital food!