8.10.2009

Heart It Races

 

I have a heart condition called Superventricular Tachycardia.  It's an electrical problem that causes my heart to have extra beats, which in turn causes it to spaz out, beating way too fast (set a new record of 240bpm!).  I've got a history with this and have dealt with it since I was a teenager.  Usually comes in short bursts, remedied under a minute, and is typically brought on through a cocktail of dehydration, sleep deprivation, stress, and caffeine.  Been to the ER and seen cardiologists twice.  Was taking meds about a year ago, but it seemed to be under control and infrequent enough to not worry about it.

While shooting Chanelle's family portraits Saturday morning, it came on suddenly and unprovoked.  I tried some of the typical maneuvers that usually help break the shorter episodes.  We went back to their house, tried a few other things, but nothing was working.  Not having health insurance was pushing toward avoiding the ER at all costs, but nothing was working and our quick trip to urgent care turned into an immediate turnaround to Mercy Gilbert.  I was admitted right away (they took my pulse and the machine emergency alarm turned on), hooked up to the EKG, and given a nice dose of Adenosine which broke the rhythm, and put me back to normal, all within 15 minutes.

4 hours later, I met with a cardiologist, who gave me a recommendation concurrent with my other two cardiologists: radiofrequency ablation. Basically, they burn a little part of your heart.  (Seriously, how emo does that sound?  Thinking I should wear skinny jeans to the procedure.)  It's outpatient, simple, over 90% effective, and expensive.  It's necessary, but doesn't need to be done right away.  Dr. was comfortable with me waiting to sort out my insurance coverage before proceeding with this, which was a relief.  Between that and my traveling schedule, later this fall, October-November-ish looks to be the projected time.  Until then, I'll be on meds to help regulate my heart beat.

I've been able to rest through the weekend, but was pretty worn out from the whole episode.  Definitely feeling heaps better, but will be doing my best to take it a little bit easier this upcoming week.  Please pray for continued rest, financial provision, and a quick response from Access about whether I'm eligible for coverage or not.

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Highlights:

- Clint and Chanelle's forbearance with all the all the home remedies attempting to get my heart rate back to normal. This included standing in their shower while they dumped ice water on me.  True story.  They're *that* good of friends.  :)

- Having my brother there through the whole ER experience was a huge blessing.  Great to catch up with him, laugh, dream, and have someone look after me.  We had definitely some great brother-sister bonding moments.  He also took on the responsibility for keeping everyone updated on Twitter/Facebook, texts. He's pretty awesome like that.

- After having my consultation with the cardiologist from Mumbai, she and I had a delightful conversation about our favorite Bollywood films and Indian musicians.  My referral card has medical information and movie recommendations.

- All the encouraging tweets, e-mails, wall posts, texts, and visits.  I am grateful for your prayers and feel your love deeply.  I am really blessed to have wonderful friends.

Posted via web from Luz's Posterous

7 comments:

maventheavenger aka jamie said...

wow. thanks for posting the day's events. I am glad some good came out of all the craziness. And I am so glad you are doing well!

Susan said...

Thanks for the update, Luz. We're so glad you're better and are praying for you.

iamchanelle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
iamchanelle said...

oh, the adventures life takes you on, dear heart.
so glad you are ok.

we <3 you!!!!

but don't make us waterboard you again, mmmkay?!?! ;)

Heather said...

What a weekend. I'll be praying you...

Luz said...

thanks, all! appreciate your love and prayers!

Serra said...

Hey! Sorry:( I have a similar heart thing! I can't drink caffeine because of it! Your highlight about the ice..hilarious:) Hope beside the health stuff you are doing well. Let me know if you ever come back to San Diego!