After a 7-year ceasefire, the atrial flutter that came with the Lupus package has reared its head again. And it’s back with a vengeance.
It started lobbing random missiles at me from time to time over the last year. Then about two months ago, The First Atrial Flutter Brigade launched a full-blown invasion, breaching the ramparts of my beta blockers and storming the beaches of the upper chamber of my heart.
Long story short, I’m off for a quickly-scheduled appointment in the morning to see what can be done about it and to make sure the atrial flutter returning isn’t a sign of a more serious heart problem.
I don’t know if you’ve ever experienced an atrial flutter. It’s fairly freaksome.
As I explained to my brother if you’ve ever been on a rollercoaster that has a sudden, unexpected drop that plummets you several hundred feet, you know what an atrial flutter feels like.
The first time it happened to me, it freaked me the hell out. I had no idea what was going on. Naturally, my subsequent panic made the situation worse and I ended up in the ER convinced I was dying from a heart attack. The doctor put me on beta blockers that took care of the problem lickety-split.
For years, the beta blockers worked, keeping my heart rhythm normal and preventing my blood pressure from reaching critical mass. But no more. When it went full-blown flutter two months ago, I seriously considered the possibility that the pharmacist accidentally refilled my prescription with sugar pills.
Now, I probably should’ve called my doctor when the flutter first refluttered. But I am notoriously bad at seeing to medical problems. When you go to the doctor twice a year for Lupus, the thought of more appointments on top of that is exhausting.
Instead of doing the sensible thing, I cut back on any physical exertion that increased my heart rate and spent more time resting in the futile hope the flutter would simply flutter away and leave me alone.
It didn’t. And the last week has been awful. Hence, the visit to the doctor.
Now, I’m not overly worried.
Okay, maybe I’m a smidge on the worried side. But I’m not in a state of blind panic. Although, when the nurse instructed me in no uncertain terms to go immediately to the ER if I experience any chest pains before my appointment, I could feel blind panic nudging at the edges of my psyche.
We’ll see what happens once the doctor does an EKG and checks me out. Best case scenario, he just increases the dosage of my beta blocker and sends me merrily on my way.
I hope like hell he doesn’t order another stress test or angiogram. Man, I hated those the last time I had them, especially the angiogram. My wrist and arm were bruised for over a week after that.
Anyroad. If you are the praying type, I could use your prayers because while I may be keeping the blind panic at bay, I can still feel it there tap-tap-tapping in the back of my mind, desperate to find a way in.
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