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Did I Have a Minor Heart Attack ?(5 Posts)
If there even is such a thing
I collapsed earlier in the week, no stress at that moment, just maybe skipped up the last few steps a bit faster than my body likes these days. Severe pain in my left arm, running into my upper left back & a tearing pain under my arm into the upper middle of my chest. Though the chest pain was quite mild, not what I would expect from a heart attack at all.
I wasn't sure what to make of it, I felt an overwhelming fear & nauseous too, but it still just seemed a bit melodramatic to be thinking if ringing 999. I took myself off into the spare room to sit it out as I didn't want to frighten DD, who was in with DH watching TV (she's is already ill & suffering with anxiety)
The feeling of fear & pain in my arm & back grew, plus clammy & blue lips, so I checked the NHS site for symptoms & it said to ring 999 immediately, I still felt like a drama queen & I'm used to health problems, do rang 111, sort of hoping they would tell me it was nothing to worry about.
Whilst talking to them I was getting worse & had to call DH to help as I was losing the use of my left arm, my grip completely went - paramedics were here before DH could even get me downstairs, they hooked me up & after heart checks I was blue lighted to A&E as they thought I was heaving a heart attack. They kept me in over night & ran a ton of tests. I insisted on going on my own as I was worrying about stressing DD, but I was so ill that I realise I didn't take everything in properly- my BP was so high, so was my heart rate, though I do have POTs.
Thankfully all heart scans came back as no blockages are damage, they said they didn't really know what had happened, though they though I had probably had a muscle spasm in the artery leading to the heart which had temporarily blocked it, but thankfully hadn't caused damage.
My BP was still crazy though highest was 273/159) & they wouldn't let me out until it was under 200, I noticed it dropped a lot when I got myself up & used a walker to get to the water machine & drank a litre+ of water to flush out the dye from the scan & I had a gut feeling it might help. Breathing exercises helped further.
They let me come home at lunch time the following day, but with BP drugs to take & I pretty much slept for 3 days, thankfully DH has been around to take care of DD.
I still feel like I was hit by a truck, my chest & arm are still sore & I am just so weak & shaky, but I feel very, very lucky.
But here I am bolt upright awake again, with my mind & heart racing ten to the dozen & I just don't know & though I am coping, if I am truly honest, not having a proper answer, scares me. Though I'm beginning to think that the drug the hospital have given me to take, could be causing these middle of the night panicky feelings.
Was this a heart attack of sorts
It sounds like what would be called cardiac artery spasm which will give you some of the same symptoms as a heart attack but the vessel is essentially healthy and the heart muscle entirely undamaged.
Very scary for you but the good news is that because there is no permanent damage your cardiac risk in the future is unlikely to be affected. However your blood pressure was dangerously high, and I assume you've been sent home on some sort of medication for that? Sometimes if you've been quietly running a high blood pressure for a while you can feel tired, slow and just quite odd on many of these drugs at first.
More likely (IMO - and it's just that, I work in a different medical field) is that what you get with cardiac events can be what's described as 'a feeling of impending doom'. That plus the distress for you and your family has probably given you a degree of post traumatic stress symptoms (I'm not talking about post-traumatic stress disorder - like most things you can have some of the symptoms more mildly however) and generally we don't deal with this well in people who are blue lighted in in emergencies as we're trying to save lives but anecdotally the shock of suddenly being ill is huge. Time is the biggest healer - you have obviously got good techniques to manage your POTS and these will stand you in good stead. Talk about it to those you think will be supportive. Be kind to yourself and don't stop the drugs unless your doctor says to - you will get used to them.
Did they give you a discharge letter to bring home? It should give you a breakdown of your admission / any required follow up if you weren't taking everything in at the time (understandable). It may also give you a ' troponin- I ' level which is an enzyme released when cardiac muscle is damaged and a marker of a heart attack. A coronary artery spasm would give you the same symptoms as a heart attack as while the vessel is not narrowed or blocked the blood flow to that area of the heart would be restricted for a time, when the spasm releases the area would be re-perfused.
Apologies for slow reply, migraine kicked in
Thank you boxofsnails that is much more reassuring & makes a lot of sense too
I'm pretty sure that now what caused it, especially having spoken with the Pernicious Anaemia people, but I'm really struggling to get my doctor to take it seriously & treat me as my blood tests were just barely the right side of "normal" & she's refusing to follow guidelines & insists I don't need treatment
Thank you origins - no, I wasn't given a discharge letter, I should have asked, but I was a bit shell shocked still when they let me out, though I'm wondering if it's because I wasn't officially admitted as it was a very busy night & there were no beds. They did give me a bed in a side ward of A&E though, so I was comfortable at least
Sorry, I'm using the app, so I can't see the post I'm replying to & I have the memory span of a gnat at the moment
I see my GP again later in the week, so will ask for print outs of the report then - I know I did have something show in my blood a while back that could be a marker for a few things, cardiac included, though amongst other things, I have kidney disease, so I think it was put down to that, though it all keeps coming back to PA, which is rife in my family
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