Jerry thinks she is having a heart attack
The Sudden Onset of Questionable Pain
It was Thanksgiving Day November 22, 2018 and I was just relaxing and not even doing anything important. I felt no pain or stress at the time it happened. I was just printing the diet inserts for my planner I bought from Etsy. I was going to cut them and punch them and put them in my planner when the crushing vice-like pain grabbed me in the chest. It spread quickly in two directions spreading up to my throat a burning horrific sensation that grabs hold of my jaws making even my teeth hurt and then it reaches my face leaving my face in a numb state. At the same time this is going on the pain is making a descent down to my stomach the pain there is heavy and sharp, and I don't know whether it is going to make me sick or just become extremely nauseous. I am feeling very strange and of course dizziness is starting to take hold of me and the thought came over me that maybe I should sit down before I faint. So, I am making a slow walk to the living room from the dining room table and my husband sees me grabbing my throat and chest.
I reply, "pain in my chest, throat and jaws also my face feels numb and my stomach hurts too. I can't stand the pain."
"I always have tried to put a picture on my pain it is the best way for me to describe it since I am a very visual person. "I have never felt this kind of pain ever before in my life," I said with a look of pure agony etched across my face."
"Jerri are you having a heart attack," he inquired with concern in his voice trying to get answers?
"I don't know this pain came on all of a sudden," I reply visibly shaken by the pain.
"Where's your blood pressure cuff we need to take your blood pressure; he says starting to panic." He too is visibly shaken, and his fingers are getting clumsier and, in a hurry, as I watch him trying to put on the blood pressure cuff.
"For Christ sakes, I can't get this cuff on to save my life, he fumes."
"Get the wrist cuff on the table, I tell him."
"It's my life were trying to save if I am having a heart attack," I remind him.
After he is successful getting the cuff on, he measures the blood pressure reading.
"What does it say," I request to know?
"It is reading 149/94 and your pulse is 102."
"That is a little bit high for you to be on beta blockers."
"I took them this morning after I ate," I reassured him.
"Do you want to go to the hospital?"
"Can't you just call the paramedics and have them check me, and let them decide if I should go to the hospital?"
"That will cost a fortune," he replies with worry etched in his brow.
The pain leaves me just as fast as it's onset. Which is quite confusing to me?
"Look the pain is leaving now all I have left is a headache that leaves my head heavy with dizziness. I feel drained and all my energy is spent. You don't have to worry about me having to go to the hospital, I say trying to stop him seeing money fly out the window. I'm sorry I don't want you to have to spend a fortune to take me to the hospital, I say feeling guilty for having all this pain hit me."
"Don't be ridiculous get your shoes and coat were going to the hospital, he states determined to get me to the hospital."
"What about our Thanksgiving dinner?"
"We'll have to turn off the oven, he states."
"What about Ollie, I questioned?" Ollie is our toy 6 lb. Yorkie-mini pin mix male dog.
"We'll have to take him with us, he says."
Getting the dog carrier ready. He gets Ollie and puts Ollie in it and goes out to the car while I get my shoes, purse and my jacket and I try to reassure Mocha, our medium size poodle and Ruby, our Yorkie that I will be right back. I'm ready now and I shut the door leaving the other two dogs behind. I get in the car and we drive off to the UCHealth ER down the street.
When we get to UCHealth ER I walk in and the clerk is friendly.
"I can I help you, the friendly clerk asks?"
I proceed to explain what has happen to me. "The clerk says, can I have your ID?"
"Yes, I say, as I am getting my Driver's License out with shaking hands and I am now the one fumbling around trying to get the blasted card out of my wallet, I am very nervous, I state."
"That is understandable and don't rush, the clerk states with a kindly smile."
"Terry hands her his insurance card that covers me."
"Oh, this is my PTSD dog, and nothing else was said."
The clerk says, "sit down you will be called soon."
So, I sit down and then no sooner than I did that I was called in to the back.
They walked me down to the room. An emergency male tech and the nurse was in the room
They hand me a gown and the nurse says, "I will hold up the blanket up in front of you and you take off your top and bra."
They had me then sit on the bed that was in a sitting mode and then they proceeded to lay the bed back into a reclined position.
"Have you ever had an EKG before, ask the male tech as he and the nurse are applying electrode to the parts of my body needed to run the EKG?"
"I responded, yes."
"They ran the EKG and when they finished the ER doc came in an introduced himself.
"Hello Mrs. Baker, I am Dr. Kenner, what happened to you?"
"I again related my story to him." the doctor listens to my heart beat while he has me take some deep breaths. He touches my face with his fingers to see if I can feel them. He also has me follow his fingers with my eyes. He checks my reflexions in my strength of my arms.
"We are going to get a CAT Scan and see what we can do to make a correct diagnosis." Because right now your EKG looks perfectly normal. The nurse will come in and draw a tube of blood from you and see what the results tell us. We also will put you on an IV to help hydrate you and increase your electrolytes. I will also have the nurse bring some aspirin for you just in case we are dealing with a heart attack symptom."
I nod my head in acceptance to his plan on what he plans to do for me.
After having that pain, I was left feeling stunned that my EKG was still normal and strange, and it dumfounded me. The nurse went off to get her supplies to do the blood draw.
The nurse came back proceeded to draw the blood and she says "I am only going to have to insert the needle once she said. You will be able to bend your elbow if you need to. I will draw the blood first then start the IV Saline going for you to get your electrolytes back up." She busied herself and soon she was finished. She comes back in and states, "this is aspirin that the doctor has ordered for you to take," as she hands me this little cup of water. It's really nice how they describe what they are doing to you when you are in a frighten state like I am.
The next time the nurse came into the room was to put me into the wheelchair and take me into the CAT Scan room for the CAT Scan.
"Would you make me a copy of the CAT scan for me?"
"Yes, since it is digital, I can put it on a CD for you."
"Thank you for doing that for me."
Soon enough I was back in the bed. I was in the ER for about two hours and the pain did not reoccur. My mind was not there it was reliving my experience and I was trying to figure it all out what had happened to me. The onset of the pain and what it had felt like. It was as though it was an attack on me but what kind? was it physical or spiritual? I would just have to wait and see what the CAT Scan shows, and the blood work shows to make any kind of decision.
The doctor came into the room and told me some news.
"Well, Mrs. Baker your EKG was normal, and your labs were normal and in normal range. Your CAT Scan was normal also. I have ruled out all the scary stuff like heart attack and stroke. The only thing it might be is a possible Esophageal Spasm that often mimics the signs and pain of a heart attack."
"I am concerned it might reoccur, I said with worry etching my forehead."
"You did right in coming to get checked out and if it returns you come back in, understand."
"Yes, and thank you, I said."
"You may get dressed now." The nurse came in and removed the needle from my arm. I removed the tape that the EKG electrodes connected to and I stuck them on the bed sheet,
Terry came in and he helped me get dressed.
We stopped by the window to check out. The clerk gave me a packet of papers and said, "There are no co-pays and if you have any billing questions call this number, as she pointed to the number on the sheet. Enjoy what is left of your Thanksgiving Day."
"I replied, same to you to."
Terry was very relieved and was glad of his decision to bring me in to get checked up. He must've been worrying his head off. Maybe he realized how much he loved me and thought of losing me just like that was very unnerving to say the least. I noticed now how much relief was etched in his face and he said, "It is worth all the money that it will cost just to know you're going to be all right."
I know what ever had occurred it had drained me of all my energy and left me with a headache and tiredness for several more days. They say that people that have had a heart attack it leaves them very tired and drained and that is exactly how I feel. It was a very scary episode in my life as well as Terry's. It is one scary episode I do not care to relive for any reason. If that was an esophageal spasm, I would hate to experience a heart attack.
"Knock on wood!"
This story is based on true event. Names were changed for privacy reasons.