Sunday evening yet again. How did that happen?!
I hope you’ve all had a brilliant weekend and managed to do something you enjoy 🙂 this next post is all about tests: lovely medical tests.
After being referred by my GP at the time, I was due to have some not so pleasant sounding tests at a specialist hospital in London. I’d been under a consultant there for a while who concluded that yepppppp I needed some more prodding and poking. This was around 4 years ago now I think. The hospital actually booked a hotel room for me and my mum as we’d have to stay overnight. AND a patient transport ‘ambulance’ picked us up from home and took us all the way to the hospital. I know that some people have had awful experiences with the NHS but this was the total opposite. I was so thankful. Anyway! The first day I had a 24hr blood pressure monitor fitted. Once that was all explained, we were allowed to go back to the hotel room till the morning.
The next morning I remember demolishing as much food as I could from the buffet. I wasn’t allowed to eat for about 4 hours before the upcoming test so I munched on fruit, cooked brekkie bits, yoghurt, juices + coffee. Well it would have been rude not to. Now the big scary test was coming up; another tilt table. But this time, I would be exposed to ‘stressors’ beforehand. I was strapped onto the hospital bed (to make sure I didn’t faint whilst tilted upwards, although I’ve never fainted in my entire life) and had a cannula fitted to take blood throughout. Yucky yucky. Before being tilted, I had my hand placed between two ice packs to see how my heart rate, blood pressure etc reacted. I then had to count down from a given number in increments of another number. It’s all a bit hazy really but they are the stressors I can think of right now. I was then tilted upright and, as with my previous one, it was stopped prematurely as I was clearly symptomatic and they had the results they needed. The whole thing was over in an hour and a half; a lot quicker than we were expecting. The POTS diagnosis held up and they were sure that my heart itself was totally fine. Relief!
As soon as I could, I grabbed a packet of crisps as I hadn’t eaten for almost 5 hours or something ridiculous. I then had a brief chat with a consultant who went through the findings with us, discussing the next steps etc. Then patient transport was organised for the journey home; totally on the spot. Again I was so unbelievably grateful for the NHS and the hospital staff for making it all so easy and as stress-free as possible.
I appreciate that this probably wasn’t as detailed as it could have been, but my memory seems to have blurred it all into a big mess of wires and hospital gowns. I do have the paperwork somewhere that gives the specific readings from my tilt table ordeal, although it’s likely to be crammed at the bottom of a drawer that’s full of all my medical stuff *gulp*