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First ride in an ambulance

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Today was supposed to be an uneventful Sunday.

I was supposed to go to the gym, do laundry and a bit of cleaning around the house, and prepare myself for the work week.

What happened was a little different though.

I woke up and had breakfast… and I felt fine.

I went to the gym and did my normal 8 miles in 32 minutes on the elliptical.

It was humid in the gym (like usual) so I was hot when I was done, but that's nothing new.

I continued on with my strength training… and I felt fine until towards the end of my workout when I started to feel a bit dizzy.

I noticed that my heart rate monitor said my heart rate was in the 140s, then it would drop down into the 70s, then jump up to the 130s, then back into the 70s. It did that for a couple of minutes and then it started to take longer for it to get back into the 130/140s… and at that point I started to feel like I was going to pass out.

I told my boyfriend I didn’t feel so good and went to sit in a chair.

The next thing I remember is someone holding my wrist and asking me if I was ok.

I passed out and did a bit of convulsing with my eyes wide open, which totally freaked out my boyfriend.

A couple of EMTs walked into the gym to workout just as this happened.

Talk about good timing, huh?

They hooked me up to a machine to monitor my heart rate, which was still bouncing around all over the place and they checked my blood pressure, which was a little low for me.

The last time this happened to me was 7 years ago.

In 2002 and 2004 I had the same thing happened, but I was on an airplane at the time.

When I was a teenager I had episodes like this fairly regularly… sometimes a couple of times a month, sometimes I’d go a few months without an episode. Most of the episodes occurred when I was in the shower and most involved convulsing of some sort.

The doctors did a ton of tests… sugar tests, EKGs, ECGs, EEGs, and CAT scans… with no clue as to why I was passing out.

In 2004, after passing out on an airplane for the second time, I saw a new doctor that sent me for a tilt table test… and I left that test with a diagnosis. I have neurocardiogenic syncope.

Neurocardiogenic syncope is a temporary loss of consciousness associated with a drop in arterial blood pressure, quickly followed by a slowed heart rate. Basically, my heart rate and blood pressure drop suddenly causing me to pass out.

The EMTs said they could transport me by ambulance, I could take myself to the ER or I could just go home.

I seriously considered just going home, but since this hasn’t happened in 7 years (and because I freaked out my boyfriend) I let them take me to the hospital.

My first ever ambulance ride… and it was for passing out at the gym. I consider that to be a good thing though because it could have been for something way more serious.

In the ambulance they did an EKG, put in a line for an IV and took some blood. My blood sugar was 105 so that wasn’t the issue. By the time they started the EKG my heart rate had stabilized and my blood pressure was closer to normal.

At the hospital they asked me a million questions, did another EKG, gave me ½ a bag of fluids (the scale will love that tomorrow), took more blood, did a chest x-ray… and sent me on my way when the test results all came back normal.

Now I get to follow up with my primary care doctor.

I have a horrible bruise from the IV line, but otherwise I feel like normal now.

So how’s that for an uneventful Sunday?

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    OH MY WORD!!!!
    I HATE that I missed your "uneventful Sunday"
    I'm so sorry.

    I've heard of this heart condition before, but, when you were first describing your symptoms all I thought was that you were having a seizure or a thyroid spasm.

    Wow. Ya, I see why boyfriend was nervous of the gym. I was mad at him in the other I'm repenting..he's just scared for you and nervous.

    1699 days ago
    I am just now reading this! OMG!!!! I am so glad you are okay. We have this in I have the same condition. It can be very scary at times. I was diagnosed back in 2001, but have learned to deal with it. Sorry you had to go through it like this. Take care!

    1700 days ago
    OMGOSH!!!! I am SO sorry that you are sick!! Thank goodness it is nothing terribly serious! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon You take care of #1, yourself. Most important thing!
    1700 days ago
    YIKES!!! how did i miss this blog? I'm so glad that everything is ok. sad that it can happen to you again. I hope you are feeling better now...(i'm going to read your next blog now so i dont' miss something else)
    1701 days ago
    Man that does NOT sound fun!!! Glad you are okay though! emoticon
    1702 days ago
    Yikes that is scary. At least you've got a cool story to tell. It's much better than if you had been sitting on the couch eating junk food or something!
    1702 days ago
  • DRKEYEZ820
    Oh gawd winnie!!!! I wouldve been totally freaked out. Ive passed out once, and have felt like i was going to many times, but i know my reasons. But for no one to give u a reason, or how to prevent it, brings the scary even more scary ya know. That was good timing for the EMT's to be walking in, fate......
    I hope ur feeling tons better now. Cant be having anything happen to u! Geez!

    1703 days ago
    WOWSERS! I'm so glad you are okay!
    1703 days ago
    Sounds a little familiar, especially the tilt test thing (in my case they said "neurocardiogenic syndrome" - I have no idea what the difference is, if at all). But I'm glad to see nothing else is wrong - hope you've had some rest.
    1703 days ago
    Whoa! What a day! So fortunate that the EMTs were close at hand. I;m really glad to hear you're feeling better!

    Mu youngest has bouts of neurocardiogenic syncope and it's scary as you-know-what! And, of course, with Eleni it only seems to happen in big crowds of strangers, once on a first (and last!) date, but never in the comfort and privacy of home!

    Take care of yourself, my friend.
    1704 days ago
    Wow! How scary for you and your boyfriend!
    1704 days ago
    How lucky the EMTs were there when it happened. I hope you can get things figured out. Take care!
    1704 days ago
    You poor thing! I agree, so glad you weren't driving.
    1704 days ago
    what a craptastic day! glad you went in the ambulance, what if it had happened when you were driving?

    keep safe xx
    1704 days ago
    I'm so sorry that happened to you!!! How scary!!!! Hope they figure you what is going on!!

    1704 days ago
    Aren't ambulance rides fun? NOT!!!! I have had a couple this last year for the first time and do not wish them on anyone. I agree with LoriAnne about the neuro work up up. Something is not right and now that is it is happening when you are getting healthier that is even more scary and nothing to take lightly. Be your own advocate and ask to really look into this. I am glad you feel better.
    1704 days ago
    woah! What a Sunday!
    1704 days ago
    Seems like you wanted a like excitement and the gym wasn't enough to get your heart rate racing. Hope this doesn't happen again.

    Unfortunately, I've had too many rides in ambulances to know they aren't very comfortable and usually hit every bump along the way. Just hope that you don't have any further episode, but I would see about having your doc see about giving you some sort of anti-anxiety med. As someone with a seizure disorder, it scares me when someone has a seizure like episode in a public place and isn't given a full neurological workup.

    :) Let me know the rest of your week is calm.
    1704 days ago
    I am so sorry, that is scary! What amazing timing with the EMT's being there! I hope you are able to figure out what is going on with your doctor. I hope you are resting now.
    1704 days ago
    Glad you are feeling better!!
    1704 days ago
  • SHIRE33
    What a day! Glad you're following up with your doctor. Keep us posted. : )
    1704 days ago
    Oh no! I hope it doesn't happen again for a while. My first ambulance ride was when my son got hit by a car and I went with him in the ambulance to the hospital. Thankfully 3-year-olds bounce fairly well and he was only left with a concussion and a few scrapes and bruises from the hit-and-run driver. Grrr.... He's 7 now.
    1704 days ago
    Oh wow, I hope everythings going to be okay. Sorry to hear your day turned out like that!! Relax and Take good care of yourself!
    1704 days ago
    Sounds to me like you were just trying to get some attention.


    Seriously. Glad you're fine and feeling better.

    1704 days ago
  • SALEX52
    Not how you want to spend Sunday, but it sure would be nice if they can figure out what's going on.
    1704 days ago
  • GINA180847
    Yikes! Hope this is not too serious. Not what I'd like to see happen on a nice Sat. afternoon. Take good care of yourself!
    1704 days ago
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