Last week I went to get the results of my cardiac exercise test, and came away with just as much knowledge about where to go in Rome!
I was seen initially (after the usual round of weight, Sats, ECG) by the Cardiac Liaison Nurse who informed me that my results show I am ‘still severely impaired, but stable’ – which is the best I can hope for and exactly what I hoped he would say. He felt I couldn’t have done any more, gone on any further, as I had reached a plateau which proved I had done my best.
Myself, I just wanted to feel that I hadn’t deteriorated since I last had the test 5 years ago after I was very ill because my heart was stopping, I was carrying a lot of fluid and there was talk of me needing to go on the transplant list. Fortunately the brilliant Consultants at the Birmingham Q E Hospital admitted me, made me rest for 10 days whilst they sorted out my medication so I could get rid of all the fluid (I lost 5 litres of fluid – better than weight watchers!), fitted a pacemaker and did various tests. I wasn’t that impressed because I was supposed to be at the Olympics – watching, not taking part obviously! – but it needed to be done. I am forever grateful for their ability to pick me up and turn me around. Not too long after it became clear that I didn’t need to be referred for transplant assessment yet, and my goal now is to remain as fit as I am able. I know how lucky I am to be this old, with this condition and still do as much as I can. I need to be the best I can be to be there for my family.
After a chat (including me mentioning Andre & I were going to Rome) and an examination I was pronounced free to go – as I came out of the Nurse’s Office, I passed one of the consulting rooms, and now I know that I’ve, like many of us ‘older’ CHD patients, have reached the point where I know my Consultant well – probably happened a long time ago actually – because he called me in, insisted I went to get Andre, and we all spent the next 10 – 15 minutes looking at google maps, discussing where to go and what to do in Rome. He even told Andre where the young people go to be romantic, much to Nathan’s embarrassment! It turned out he had recently been and so was able to give us lots of tips. He did tell Andre I was doing really well. I just hope he didn’t have any other patients to see!
So now we are busy preparing for our big adventure……….