The stress test technician, Julie, was very nice, and while she took my blood pressure, dotted my body with electrodes and hooked me up to a machine which displayed my heartbeat on a television monitor--as well as chugged out a long succession of paper printing said heartbeat--we discussed everything from menopause to how to remove the sticky residue from between my boobs (see previous post re: Holter Monitor) to Kate Moss (I'd been reading Vogue prior to Julie's arrival).
The doctor appeared shortly thereafter and following several questions regarding my symptoms, I was asked to step on a treadmill which steadily increased in pace and incline to raise the level of my heartbeat.
A note here about the doctor: I adored this man. I'm not sure if he is just a really good physician or if he took somewhat of a liking to me, but throughout the exam and subsequent consultation, I almost began to think of myself as his long-lost daughter. No lie. Estimating, I'd guess he is in his mid-seventies. He has eyes the shade of the softest powder blue baby blanket and spoke with a strong East German accent (Or could've been Polish. Regardless, he had to be from some European country.)
Dr. Bonus Point #1: "It vould seem you may have some trouble with thees time of year. But thees is to be expected. Vith a Thanksgiving feast to prepare, house guests, Christmas and another feast... Ach, the stress is unduly hawd."
He really was quite fatherly--to me, at least-- and consequently took me under his wing. Said he was taking over the case, would dictate a letter to my regular GP, and then suggested several times that I call him directly should I have any questions or trouble. Sort of unheard of in this day in age for a busy cardiologist.
The diagnosis: cardiac arrythmia. The good news is the condition is benign--based on the fact the palpitations disappeared during exercise.
Dr. Bonus Point #2: "Vat thees means is you vill not suffer a hawtattack, stroke or hawtdisease from thees condition."
Okay, so now the only hurdle is to find the right meds. While cardiac arrythmia can be controlled with exercise, it takes a while for it to work (i.e. the longer I exercise over a period of months, the less I should experience the fluttering). So in the meantime I'm either left to suffer or can take meds which, unfortunately, come with a long list of side affects. And while the one pill I took last night did ease the fluttering quite a bit, today my brain has been officially zombiefied.
So that brings things up to speed. I want to pause here a moment, though, to extend my deepest most heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has contacted me to show their support. I seriously don't think I'd have been able to make it through these past few weeks without all of you. Thank you so much for all the comments and well wishes. You have made me feel truly loved.
XO AJ XO