Surviving a Heart Attack;The Beat Goes On.

aHA....I found the problem!!
aHA....I found the problem!!

No Fluff. Just Facts

The last thing on a healthy 54 year-old woman's mind on any given day, would be contemplating the possibility of having a heart attack. With all the daily activities of life going in every direction, the hundreds of thoughts whizzing through one's head and feeling quite fine and dandy, there would be no reason to suddenly conjure up a health issue.

I'd always been blessed with sound mind and body and had done at least 90% of those things we're suppose to do to be vigilant and responsible for our own state of overall wellness. Whenever I sat with clipboard and forms to fill out, I could easily breeze through it, checking "No", next to the vast majority of illness, disease and injuries.

Family history had a few check marks in the "yes" box but even genetics didn't seem to be a major red flag in a specific area. Certainly, I am alert to the importance of possible familial and/or hereditary health issues but I made a conscious decision to never be overly concerned. To stress to the point of constant worry or paranoia is just not my style.

So, on a routine Friday evening, I paid little attention to feeling, as I called it....."a bit off." I felt much more fatigued than I thought I should have and just felt as we all have from time to time....as in, blah. I Could not put my finger on a damned thing and to be honest, I became annoyed with myself. I know you can relate to this common occurrence.

I went to bed around 10 p.m......My Mr. Wonderful already snoring powerfully enough to vibrate the window panes. Bless his heart.

I've never even had any sort of sleep disorder. My head hits the pillow and you can count down from 30. I'm out. Nothing was different this night except that as I was drifting off, I was keenly aware of a mild discomfort in the entirety of my left arm. This discomfort increased to pain enough for me to sit up and concentrate. My mind is repeating a few times.."shooting pain up my left arm and into my chest."

There I sat, feeling this pain and thinking that phrase. At the very same time, my little buddy, Miss Denial, is trying to convince Miss Awake and Aware...."crazy, you're simply crazy girl. What you're thinking is not possible. Lay down and go to sleep."

In a few minutes, Miss Awake and Aware said, "Oh, I see, you're waiting for the deep, booming voice to come through the roof, "Child, get thy butt to the emergency room."

So, I turned up the pressure and I shook my husband's shoulder at one a.m., which is dangerous to my well-being to begin with. Jim bolts up swinging, looking crazed and confused, saying, "What! What is it....Who??....What's wrong?!"

When I finished laughing as I always do when he does this....I told him I thought he should probably drive me to Mercy Hospital. Another bolt out of bed, slipping on his khakis like a first time Dad whose wife is in labor. Pretty quick move for a 61 year-old man still half-asleep.

I hate the word, "Emergency."  It creates panic.
I hate the word, "Emergency." It creates panic.
"Possible Heart attack."  Lets get her Insurance Info.
"Possible Heart attack." Lets get her Insurance Info.

Off we went....to see a wizard

The hospital is only a thirty minute drive. I reassured Jim he needn't speed, drive through red lights or take corners on two wheels. He was very cooperative, except for asking me how I was feeling every 45 seconds or so. After around the 10th time, I told him if he asked me again, I would jump from our moving vehicle. He didn't ask again. This reconfirmed his love for me. How sweet. He didn't want me to jump.

We've all had our share of emergency room experiences, whether for us or accompanying someone else. Where ever you live, I've no doubt that most ER's are pretty much the same.

I did not look like an emergency. I wasn't acting like an emergency. I simply walked up to the window and declared that I believed I was having a heart attack. I was directed to the cubby to the left, to a chair across from a desk and a young lady at a computer. Without looking up, she proceeded to ask for the standard insurance information.. A nurse came in and sat next to me as she took my vitals.....heart rhythm, blood pressure, temp. Cool, huh? This is what I call an emergency room well-trained to multi-task

Once they felt assured they could bill us regardless of the outcome, I was steered into an examining room. In all fairness to the E.R. staff, things proceeded fairly well. In came a little female who looked to me to be all of 13 years old. I remained calm. I know some really smart 13 year-olds. She was wheeling a portable EKG monitor, which she hooked me up to and did her thing. So far, so good. She wheeled back out the same way she had entered and soon, in came an incredibly handsome Dr.

No doubt from his tan color, black hair and gorgeous big brown bedroom eyes, as well as Middle Eastern accent, I guessed, hmmmm, India?. Well girls, let me tell you....he placed his hand on mine and smiled, exposing not only the most perfect teeth in the world, but dimples too. Dimples, I tell you.

At that moment, I was a bit sad I had died but pleased I'd made it to Heaven.

All the basic tests done and questions answered, it was time for Dracula. The blood enzymes are apparently the test that detects the best and the most, in terms of heart activity. This is what I'm told anyway. Results come back in a few minutes and are viewed by the Dr. and staff.

The verdict was that my enzyme levels were stable. I had not had a heart attack nor was I in the process of one. I was fine and I could go home. The fact is, that dastardly pain in my arm was gone and I had no problem signing out and promising to follow-up with my PCP.......even though she's not a gorgeous, dreamy-looking Indian Dr.

YaHOO!!!!   Look, Gram, No hands!!
YaHOO!!!! Look, Gram, No hands!!
Dinner with the boys
Dinner with the boys

Saturday went well. Sunday was Fine

Two of the grandchildren had come on Saturday to spend the day and night with Gram and Gramp. They would go sledding down our hills all day Saturday and again on Sunday after breakfast. These boys are tough. They came in only briefly to have some hot chocolate and exchange wet mittens for dry ones. I remembered doing the same thing at their age, staying out in the snow until I was nearly frozen solid. These days, I watch from the window.

For two days I remained unfazed by what had occurred on Friday night. No aches, no pains. I felt fine. The week-end was a wonderful time with the boys.

Now may be the perfect time for me to give you fair (and necessary) warning: Heart attacks can quite often be as sneaky and stealth as a thief in the night. If you have experienced a medical issue serious enough to warrant an emergency visit, feeling good afterward is not a free ticket to perfectly healthy. More often than not, an initial attack is a blatant warning that we must heed.

Monday morning. Back to the Office.

Monday mornings at work were hectic. Files to go over, appointments to reconfirm, and evaluations to edit. By noon I'd accomplished enough to stop and run next door to pick up some lunch to bring back to the office. All I wanted was some Chinese vegetable rice and a bottle of water.

After eating, I tossed out the containers and turned to head back to my desk. At that instant without warning, quite suddenly and fiercely, a tight, sharp pain shot through the middle of my chest, It was a severe pulling and twisting sort of stabbing pain, between and just slightly below my breasts. I began to feel warm and nauseous as well as light-headed. Just as quickly, I made a choice to call my husband who worked 5 minutes away, rather than call 911 and not know how fast they would respond. I thought this all out in less than 5 seconds. I was alone in the office.

As a side note, that was the best decision for me at the time but realistically, EMT's and an ambulance are always advised when the emergency is a suspected heart attack or stroke. Should the severity increase, professionals and appropriate equipment can save your life. My husband could only rush over and drive me to the same Hospital we'd gone to on Friday night.

The pain I was experiencing was like nothing I'd ever known before. I wanted to scream and cry but I just kept holding my chest and trying to stay calm and breathe deeply and slowly. I admit I was a bit scared.

This time, as we walked in, I remember hearing Jim screaming out, loudly and rapidly, that we'd been in Friday night and.........you know the rest. He gave his best impression of the Hulk, although by this time, I was actually the green one in the family. "Get a Dr. for my wife this very instant! NOW!! Move it!!" I had no idea he was capable of this forcefulness and volume. I was just glad it was not directed at me.

The EKG went like lightening and after only a few beeps, the young girl ripped the contacts from my chest by the cables and I heard her footsteps running down the hall. Mere seconds later, I heard many footsteps running toward me. I thought, "Oops, this must be the real deal.".

Hey guys.....What's up?
Hey guys.....What's up?

Warning: Actual medical procedure (Angiogram)

YUK!!!
YUK!!!
Hungry!
Hungry!

Cardiologist, angiogram, "Hello, Blockage."

Sedated and appropriately numbed, the Wizard, ever-so-gently cruised up and through my artery to place a Multi-Link Penta stent into the blocked space of the right atrium of my heart. I don't even know how to describe being able to see and hear, but not speak, nor move a single muscle aside from my eyelids. It is, to say the least, surreal.

I watched and listened from my position on the table, dozing in and out, until awakening, strapped firmly down, in recovery. Flat on my back for hours, being poked and prodded, IV hooked up, monitor beeping and flashing above my head, I was finally given a room of my own.

All I asked for was, something to drink and eat and please turn the TV on.....and when can I go home?

I was assured, after the Dr. saw me and left instructions and prescriptions, he would probably OK my release for the next morning. I was happy with this and slept like a baby until hubby came in to visit.

He was stressed and still a bit uptight but relieved that It was over and I was going to be just fine. Poor Jim, he is undoubtedly an A-Type personality. He told me he was so angry about the Hospital having sent me home on Friday night, claiming I was not having a heart incident.....He said, "My God, I keep thinking about how devastating, had their error and malpractice could have resulted in us losing you. I'd have sued the crap out of them.

Being who I am, regardless of circumstance or place, I looked up at him lazily and said, "Awww, Jim honey, I'm so sorry....I'll try harder next time for the money."

As we do so often, we just burst into fits of laughter. Believe me, it felt very good to be able to do that. I was still here.

Anyway, 10 years and doing great......**A word of advice: Don't have a heart attack..they suck.

Heart attack & Women

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Comments 125 comments

fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 2 weeks ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Shan & Mike....Hi there...good to see you both. To be perfectly honest, unless I'm reminded by needing to answer health history questions, I forget about this spooky incident myself. I'm quite serious when I claim to not dwell on the negative.

As long as I have your attention, I'll use this opportunity to quote Michael Pritchard. Besides being a public speaker, SEL advocate, educator & humorist, he's also the Genius who said the following (which I believe with all my heart) :

"We don't stop laughing when we grow old~~We grow old when we stop laughing."

Thanks for stopping by dear friends....Paula


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 2 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Hi Paula, shanmarie's comment brought me back here. I had forgotten this episode in your history. Glad you are still laughing.


shanmarie profile image

shanmarie 2 weeks ago from Texas

Don't know what led me to find this hub, but here I am. Your sense of humor stands out here. I would say that it is no laughing matter, but I joke even when I am complaining. I think humor makes everything better even if only just a little. And if I can't laughter when something is in progress, I often joke afterward. Last Thanksgiving I was trapped in a flash flood between two bridges for four hours and I didn't double over in pain when doctors said most do with the kidney stones. I tend to be calm during an emergency and react afterward, so I can picture you being calm when you went to the ER the first time. I am so glad you're still around!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 6 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Thelma....Honey, Halfway to sixty??? LOL. Yes, it's good to listen to your body, but at 30 quite frankly the only things your body should be telling you is, feed me, give me fresh air & activity, let me play & laugh, have fun & make love.....when we're tired, we'll sleep and the rest of the time, what sort of trouble can we get into??....

Bless you Thelma. You've got a whole lotta living to do. Thanks for stopping by and for the nice comment! Peace, Paula


Thelma Alberts profile image

Thelma Alberts 6 months ago from Germany

OMG! It was so scary to read this. I am glad you are okay now. I am aware now of the symptoms just in case, but I hope not. I admire you and your hubby how each of you reacted to your emergency situation. One of my best friends suffered from heart attack when she was traveling in Australia. She told me how it was and since then I am listening to my body as I am halfway to 60. Take care and God bless.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 15 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Jackie.....In the panic of the moment, I agree it can be a bit frightening. I have an uncanny knack to remain calm when a situation involves myself......But I freak out usually, if it is one of my children or grandchildren. At least at first.

I'm very glad this is all behind me too! Thanks for stopping by!


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 15 months ago from The Beautiful South

Wow; some scary stuff! Sure glad it is behind you and as I understand it you are safer now probably than anyone who is yet to have one. I know my father-in-law had one around 65 and lived to be almost 90 and mowed and worked every day doing young men's work.

I took my dad to the ER more than once with an erratic heartbeat (which he did end up with a triple by-pass for) and you can imagine how scared I was and he played with the gears all the way there! He use to drive me crazy doing that but who would expect it while he might be dying and I couldn't fuss at him but I had the biggest fear we would start going 75 MPH backwards at any minute!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 20 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Actually Mike......this hub is 2 years old and at the time, my heart attack was 10 years prior.....so if I can still add, that's 12 years.....That was just a little scare. It worked.

Thanks for reading! :)


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 20 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Just followed a Tweeter trail of crumbs to this article. Two years - congratulations.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Sally....I trust your story has a pleasant ending. It is amazing how often this sort of medical scare happens due to less-than-thorough care and staff indifference! Thanks for stopping by. I appreciate your support.


sallybea profile image

sallybea 3 years ago from Norfolk

fpherj48 We had a similar happening in our household two weeks ago. He was sent home - supposedly with nothing wrong - thank goodness. I was really grateful to read this Hub as it does seem that we more often than not read about men who have heart attacks. I was grateful to read this from a women's perspective - thank you for sharing.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

JPSO......Hello. It's good to have you visit. I'm happy to report I am doing quite well. Thank you!


JPSO138 profile image

JPSO138 3 years ago from Cebu, Philippines, International

I am surely glad that you made it through. Indeed heart attack has killed so many. It is the number killer when it comes to diseases and everyone should be aware that all of us are candidates for such disease. Be safe always and thanks for this great hub!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Actually Wayne, I would have thought you were following me, as well. We seem to often cross paths. It's funny, but after a "close call," such as we experienced, people come out of the woodwork, to relate their own frightening stories. Yes, there are plenty of them out there. It's always good to know there are many "LUCKY" individuals who were allowed to dodge the bullet!......Thanks, Wayne.


wayne barrett profile image

wayne barrett 3 years ago from Clearwater Florida

Wow, Paula. I had to jump to this article you mentioned after commenting on mine and it just reminds me how many others there are that have gone through similar experiences. You wrote this brilliantly, taking a very serious situation and making me smile at your humor. Thank you for letting me know about this one. I was just checking out your profile and realized I was not following you? This isn't the first time its happened to me. Getting senile I guess...I mean, I could have sworn that I was following you. Oh well, going for that button as soon as I hit all the other up buttons!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Thanks, Audrey.....I'm just fine! Too ornery to die! LOL


AudreyHowitt profile image

AudreyHowitt 3 years ago from California

Pretty scary stuff! I am so glad that you are ok!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Hi !! Thanks for stopping by. I see you are "new," in the neighborhood.

Welcome....I know I can speak for the Comminity, when I say, "We're happy to have you!" You will love it here. I promise.

I am not only still here, the little damage done by my heart attack has rejuvenated itself, believe it or not.......I got lucky, despite the original danger of the Hospital staff screw-up.

Actually, lucky for THEM.....My husband is no one they would have wanted to deal with, if the worst-case scenario had occurred. If you know what I mean!.......Good Luck to you!


Vickiw 3 years ago

Glad you are still with us to write your Hubs! Like you, I love to see the funny snippets in life, and enjoy the craziness of it all. Super Hub, helpful, funny, and best of all, the moral of it is, never trust gorgeous hunks in the ER. Just the facts, and make sure they ARE the facts. Although I don't know quite how you can argue with blood tests. I've had problems with that too.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

That's better.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

Yes Ma'am.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Til....shut UP! You may NOT use the word NEVER.....because YOU are an ALWAYS kind of gal! Got that?


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

Always striving....never achieving :)


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

LOL!!! Oh Tillie...this why I love you. You are such a perfectionist! NO NO NO.....The Energizer bunny can only survive because of EVER Ready batteries.......so, it's all the same.....I wish you knew how much you crack me up...you and Linda Sue. You ladies slay me.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

Eveready, Energizer, either way....its you GF!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Tillie...My dear friend....don't get P$$#@ed! All is cool.....Hey, Freddy Mercury never got mad.....just HIGH. I can't believe you used the term, Ever ready bunny.....My sons used to refer to me as the "Energizer Bunny," like the one in the commercial, hobbling alone, beating on a drum? I thought that was so cute..until one day, I discovered it was because ....I was always running around making "noise," and someone should remove my batteries... Now, I ask you, is this a nice thing to say about your Mama? LOL....

Hey, I can't fault them for their sick sense of humor......it's genetic.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

The thing that P#*#*'s me off is that I hadn't read this before! What have I been doing?

Of course you like Queen...but thankfully another one didn't bite the dust! (I like Queen too.)

You just keep on writing, like the Eveready bunny showing us how you master crisis after crisis. You really are amazing GF. This piece is a classic and should be posted in every woman's doctor's office. You know the old saying, "we laugh, we cried, we cheered"! You're the best. Thank God you're still here to keep us on our toes. God Bless.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

mckbirdbks.....That was quite an Olympic jump!.......I'll bet you already know this, but we have few choices......fold,fall & become a victim.....or get mad, get even and keep movin on!........Thanks for the visit!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Just link-jumped from your interview. Everything has been said. Your strength is incredible.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Thank you weestro.....Yep, I am just fine and dandy! Recently had a complete once over and found out all my numbers and stats are good to go. I've been cleared for another 300,000 miles!!


weestro profile image

weestro 4 years ago from Virginia

Wow, so glad you're doing okay Paula, pretty scary stuff. Great hub, I love your sense of humor!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Oh dear....I'm sorry we have this in common.....that business of sending people home is rather frightening, don't you think? At least in your case and mine, it wasn't such an intelligent move! I know EXACTLY how you felt. what you went through and how fortunate you feel now.....we are sisters of the heart, girl! Thanks for stopping by.


KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

KoffeeKlatch Gals 4 years ago from Sunny Florida

I love your sense of humor and great writing style. I also have had three heart attacks. Two not so bad and one not so good. A week beofre the not so good heart attack I went to the emergency room and was admitted, three days lateer they let me go home. They said I was fine and had not had a heart attack. Four days later I was sitting on my bed with my laptop on my lap writing when I started feeling strange and breathless. Then the pain began - in my chest, back, neck and jaw. I got up, chewed two aspirin, got dressed again, and told my husband I needed to go to the hospital. We raced to the hospital, it was 5 minutes away, as the pain got worse. I got to the hospital they took one look at me and rushed me to the back. I ended up in intensive care for 4 days. in the hospital for 8. I enjoyed your hub.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

MT......The moment I had the shooting pain, shooting down my left arm, however subtle it was...I knew I needed to get to an ER.......but, that was the night they sent me home!


Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 4 years ago from USA

Wow, I am so glad you are okay. Because women's heart attack symptoms are so subtle, doctors tend to miss them, and so do the women. There must be some kind of precursor warning that you recognized but doctors miss. You managed to make me laugh during this story - as I am sure it kept your husband calm as well. I've heard many recommendations that you call 911. Not only can your treatment get started faster with the medics, you also get whizzed by the paperwork stage at the ER.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Thank you kindly, Keith. Anything involving pressure on a nerve is excruciating! Shame on any Hospital Staff who does not know that patients deserve the very best of care and attention! As we all know, there is much that needs improvement, throughout our entire Health Care system! Glad your issue is behind you, as well!


KDuBarry03 4 years ago

This reminds me the time when I couldn't stand for a full 8 hours because my disk was resting on my nerve. My dad came rushing home and asked me how I was doing and I told him I couldn't walk and then we RUSHED to the hospital LOL. We weren't treated as kindly as you were, but hey: all is well now :) I'm absolutely thrilled you made it through the heart attack and delivered your experience through great humor LOL. Definitely sharing this one!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

*** Susan...You are a well-informed lady. Sadly, too many people are so unaware that heart issues are No. 1 for women, that heart attack symptoms in women are not the same at all, as they are for men, and the worst fact of all, Women are not taken seriously enough....as evidenced by Drs. fluffing their complaints & symptoms off as emotional/hormonal......write a script and send them home!!

****rcrumple.......Another heart-buddy? Those heart attacks are a real trip, eh?.....one, is more than enough for anyone! STAY HEALTHY!!

**** House.....Thank you. Yes, My hubby's a KEEPER!


HouseBuyersUS profile image

HouseBuyersUS 4 years ago from Centreville, Virginia, USA

I admire your hubby...lucky you!


rcrumple profile image

rcrumple 4 years ago from Kentucky

Paula - I'm so glad you made it! Been there, done that, unfortunately. Wrote a hub about it (fast food). You presented yours with a great sense of humor. Extremely interesting, yet, scary to one who remembers. All joking aside, I'm glad you're still here to spread your smile. God Bless!


sholland10 profile image

sholland10 4 years ago from Southwest Missouri

Paula, only you could make a serious, personal story a great read and lesson. I am so glad you shared your story. I am so thankful you are here to tell it. What a ride!! So glad you didn't jump outta the car on the first trip to the hospital.

I have always been concerned about women's heart attacks and how they sneak up on us. It seems yours certainly took you by surprise. It is a grand lesson for all of us to be aware. Thanks so much for sharing.

Votes across and shared! So glad you are here, my dear friend! :-)


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Oh dear.......Do you realize what a wise ass like me could do with that statement???LOL...but I won't


Sharyn's Slant profile image

Sharyn's Slant 4 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

ha, I would have been a wild woman cuz I hate laying on my back for any length of time.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

OH....trust me....I giggled a lot too! I had the hospital staff in stitches, actually.......having just had the angioplasty.....your groin is split open on both sides and you're flat on your back for HOURS!!! This does not go well with a crazy woman who needs to move.

In any event, I swear they were BORED, because they came into my room to WEIGH me!! They had this friggan contraption with hooks on it and a scale......Like they weigh CARGO with! They hook up the bed...patient and all and it lifts off the ground enough to get a reading.

Apparently they KNOW the weight of the bed...so they arrive at your weight by deduction.........Fine.

One of the nurses said the number out loud......and I said, "OK, ladies.....you BETTER tell me that number INCLUDES the bed...or I'm up and outta here!!!"


Sharyn's Slant profile image

Sharyn's Slant 4 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

OMG Paula, I honestly thought you were going to say they sent you home again, this time with "gas" or something. So glad to hear you are doing well. May I please tell you, I love your writing. You sure know how to capture and keep your readers attention all the way though. I giggled too, hope you don't mind.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Deborah...Please, no need to apologize! Rant accepted and applauded. My sentiments precisely. I HAVE, for many years and several health complaints, been brushed off too often...my symptoms being fluffed off and given an unacceptable diagnosis (separate from this heart incident)

I can't even get into what I had to endure for YEARS and several Drs.....continually being "patted on the head and hand".....(like I'm psycho?).....& sent home with a Rx.......It was not until I got damned angry and did my own research, found my own specialist and HAD THE APPROPRIATE TESTS AND CARE FROM A GOOD DR.....that an extremely serious issue was discovered and properly addressed.

I HEAR you, Deborah, believe me, loud and clear. Thank you so much...


DeborahNeyens profile image

DeborahNeyens 4 years ago from Iowa

I'm not surprised they sent you home the first time. If you were a 54 year old man with those sypmtoms, do you think they would have sent you home? Never!

The medical profession seems to be in denial when women present with symptoms that don't fit a certain "profile." My sister-in-law, slender and in her mid-40s, went to the emergency room at least twice with pain in her shoulder, extreme fatigue and shortness of breath and they diagnosed her with muscle strain. Turns out she had a pulmonary embolism and almost died. (She's fine now, thank God.) In my own case, my gall bladder attacks were misdiagnosed as acid reflux disorder for years because I didn't fit the "fat, forty and female" profile (except for the female part). I had to insist the last time that they do an ultrasound on my gall bladder, despite their protestations that I didn't fit the profile. Sure enough, that's what it was. After my surgery, the surgeon told my husband I had the ugliest gall bladder he had ever seen. Well, duh! I'd been having gall bladder attacks for 9 years! My other sister-in-law's gall bladder attacks were misdiagnosed as panic attacks. Lucky her. She got happy pills. All I got was acid inhibitors for my misdiagnosis. : )

Based on these experiences, and yours, it seems women really have to fight to get the medical care they need. That's why telling your story is so important. Other women need to know this can happen to them, even if they don't fit the profile, and that if a doctor tries to poo-poo it, they need to insist on getting the right kind of treatment.

Sorry about my rant, but I hear so many stories about women being sent home from the ER. And they don't all turn out as well as your's and my sister-in-law's. Some have died. It makes me so angry they did the right thing by going to the ER but didn't get the help they needed.

Glad you are OK now.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

LOL!!! Very funny. All things in moderation, banks......fewer wings, less often.....and I DO eat celery and lots of veggies..... It's really not necessary to go DRASTIC.......being too health conscious would probably put my body into permanent SHOCK!!


bankscottage profile image

bankscottage 4 years ago from Pennsylvania

Paula, I missed this the first time. Hope you are continuing to do well. No more wings at the Anchor Bar for you. Wings for me, but with your heart, you get the celery ;-))


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

I understand your every word and intention and I am so grateful. Being a smart woman when it comes to health matters.....I do take all of this seriously. You make perfect sense.

I don't know how we got so totally blessed to have you here with us at HP.....but we love you, Docmo.

I WILL delete our comment exchange, as I can appreciate "our" right to privacy in discussions such as this. I did tell Sunshine she may give you my private email address.......if she forgets...ask her for it.

it was not my cardiologist I relayed the plavix story to. It was my PCP....she's a young woman from India....I love her dearly and she DOES take time with me, but in all fairness, I can be a vocal and assertive patient, so she takes the a matter-of-fact attitude with me and we do wind up communicating well with each other....

So....thank you very much! btw...Daisy wrote Pig St a new letter.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

What a bonus we get here at HP....our own resident Doc!! I appreciate your kind and generous comment. I do take plavix....and was taking a statin....until I read Terry Meredith's in-depth study on statins. You might like to look it up. In fact, your feedback would be appreciated.

I'm really good about diet, activity, cardio, rest and supplements.....Thank you so much Docmo. Truthfully, it's been 10 years and I don't even think about the attack any more.....


Docmo profile image

Docmo 4 years ago from UK

Paula- you are such a trooper. You share your first hand experiences of a terrifying ordeal with such humor, panache and detail that anyone who reads it sis there with you. You both educate and entertain. I always tell my patients not to double guess their body ( The same thing I tell trainee doctors- I hate it when they rely on machines and lab tests and not enough on the fact that someone who has never been much to doctors turns up with a suspicious symptom- the least they could do is monitor over some time or at least warn you that tests can be ambiguous on the early hours and if the pain returns to come back immediately- which is what I do) . I can see already your story has saved a life...I always use patient narratives to educate other patients so much more powerful than journal articles and fancy studies. ( although science does need them) .. I am trying to combine in my teaching medicine where the patients perspective isn't lost, their experiences educates the Doctors as much as what they read from books... yours is a stunning example of such articulate expression. Thank God you're well. Look after yourself: and make sure you take the statins and perhaps an aspirin or other anti-platelet agents like clopidogrel. Those two are vital to keep the arteries from clogging up again even with a good diet. Best wishes!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

vnsata.....No....I doubt malpractice is involved here.......just some not-so-accurate-testing and reading, at the least.......My husband is a retired Attorney.......Old Attorneys never die.....unless someone can sue the undertaker!! LOL Thanks for your comment


vnsatakopan profile image

vnsatakopan 4 years ago from Chennai, India

Wonderful hub written in a humorous vein. Now-a days, doctors have become slave to gadgets and tests. Earlier they used to go by their instincts. Now things have to be confirmed by tests. I am not saying they are bad. Medical treatment has advanced significantly. All the same, some things are missed out. That was why you were sent home. I am sure no malpractice was involved. One of the finest hubs I have come across.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

alocsin......I thank you for reading.....and I can see I can't resist responding to your comment with a word to the wise.

May I safely assume your Dr.....SAW you after the emergency phone call and didn't just make a determinations over the phone. Don't laugh....Drs do this all the time.

Realistically, there is no such thing as "ordinary chest pain".....ORDINARILY, pain anywhere is an indication of something "OUT of the Ordinary." If you meant, the pain was determined to be due to muscle strain or an "injury" of some kind......I can deal with that.

I guess what I'm getting at is, You might want to request a nuclear medicine stress test, to be on the safe side.....in terms of any artery issues......Please think about this... Peace!!


alocsin profile image

alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

OMG, that is so frightening. I experienced something similar and called my doctor out of office hours for the first time in 20 years. Turned out to be just ordinary chest pain. Voting this Up and Interesting.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

moonlake......38??!! Good Grief.......much too young, honey.......but the "29 years ago" part is what's important. Bless you my friend and many many years of good health to you!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

froggyfish....thanks for the Molo Ditto!! I appreciate your visit and comment. It is a common occurrence, which is precisely why we all need to be on top of it!!! Thanks!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Vee.....HA! You should have seen this DR!! I rediscovered some long-lost hormones!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Michael....It makes my day to know how much you enjoyed this. It IS why we write, is it not?

It's hubby who needs to be careful, Molo......he's grown suspicious of me. The "Old vacuum cleaner left in the middle of the hallway" trick....as he stumbles in the dark on one of his many trips to the (what is it you English say?) LOO?

"I swear, Your Honor, it's just my absent-mindedness!!"

But you know....come to think of it, he DID drive pretty slow.....hmmmm.......


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

pinxin..........Anything I can do to contribute to the cause!!....Thanks for the visit!!


pinxinsales004 4 years ago

That makes me think...


moonlake profile image

moonlake 4 years ago from America

I'm glad to hear your doing so good. It will be 29 years for me in Dec. I went 27 years before something else had to be done for my heart. I was 38 at the time with young children. Heart disease was not a big thing in my family at the time. My grandfather was the only person that had a heart attack and had passed away when I was 14.

I'm sure you have helped many people by telling your story. Voted Up.


frogyfish profile image

frogyfish 4 years ago from Central United States of America

Add my ditto to molometer's comments! Quite an ordeal, and sadly, is a realistic happening again and again . But because of the outcome...I'm still grinning! Thank you for sharing an informative episode!


molometer profile image

molometer 4 years ago

Firstly a clean sweep of the votes and secondly.

I almost PMSL at.

'Once they felt assured they could bill us regardless of the outcome'

This hub read perfectly. I was enthralled and tickled at the same time. lol

So glad that you didn't get the money for the malpractice, because then that would mean, that you would be dead, and I wouldn't have been able to read this brilliant hub.

Apologies and advice to hubby. Better luck next time, drive slower lol.

Sharing this all over the place.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Queen??!! as in Freddy Mercury, the incomparable musical, vocal genius??? Rest his soul and long live every note of every song he ever gave us.? THAT Queen? THE Queen?

No...I'm not a fan of Queen................................................................................lmao.


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 4 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

OK, Miss... first of all not a dry eye in the house from your rendition of WSS soundtrack...no doubt the only rendition I have ever been given in lieu of a fairly serious response that I would have expected.

Do you enjoy the musical stylings of Queen? If so, I can almost hear you humming "Sheer Heart Attack"... while waiting ever so patiently at the hospital...?

We gotta keep you around, woman. Laughter, it's where it's at...!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

Wow, leave it to you to make your tale of a heart attack funny! I loved what you said about seeing the doctor and thinking you had died and gone to heaven. You have a great sense of humor, and I love how it comes out in your writing, even in the serious stuff. Glad you shared your story--and I'm glad you made it, EFFER!!!!!!!!


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

Thanks, FP, yeah it would have been nice if the docs had caught it, but the fubbed it with my dad, too. He died of a blood clot to the base of his brain while he was in the hospital. I have NO trust in doctors or hospitals. :)


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

M A R I A ....I just met a girl named, M A R I A......and suddenly that name, will never be the same to me........M A R I A.......

I like to be in AMERICA....OK by me in AMERICA...Everything Free in America...for a small fee in America....

I feel pretty.....Oh so pretty, feel like running and dancing for joy.....I'm in love, with a pretty wonderful boy........Who's the pretty girl in that mirror there? WHAT MIRROR, WHERE? Who can that attractive girl be?

Saw this LIVE, up close and personal...on stage...3 times! LOVE it.

Hey.......how are ya, Maria? What did I come here for? Am I suppose to be saying something profound? Um.........nope, nuthin comes to me...........Thanks for visiting.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Frank, my dear friend....I have had so many RUDE AWAKENINGS in my lifetime......if I had a nickel for each one......I could spend all day every day in a hammock, sipping mineral water with lemons, as my servants tend to the chores.....and someone waits on my every whim....."Rude Awakenings," is the Title to my autobiography.

Heart attack? Piece of cake.......I put out a challenge to the Universe a long time ago......."Go ahead, make my day....give me something I can't handle." Thank you for stopping by......your POEM is awesome!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Never drank soda in my life. NONE......also......No red meat......Ice Cream Is my weakness......and Terri Meredith says I can have all I want, as long as it's home made......so there.

A lot of clogged arteries is collections from childhood on.....it builds up. It's also familial.....and some of us manufacture more cholesterol than others......there are a lot of reasons. Every single living human has some blockage, whether tiny or not.....it cannot be helped.......

I'm not planning on leaving any time soon, but what will be, will be. I need more time to annoy a hell of a lot more people..........

WOW.....my paternal grandmother had a one-time fatal heart attack.....one miniute she was walking through the living room......and in an instant, she was on the floor.....boom...down and done........68.....woman didn't have a single bad habit ever. Sooo you see?


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 4 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

Dear Paula,

I never mind arriving late at a powerful piece, including all these insightful comments, that gives us so many life lessons from your example:

The patient is always right. You recognized your symptoms. Shame on all health care professionals who do not listen first and foremost to their clients.

Maintain your sense of humor until/ if the bitter end... this is who you are and why you are a survivor. You are scrappy!

Know your priorities and love your life and those who share it.

Be healthy, and always be happy. Love, Maria


Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

Wesman Todd Shaw 4 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

WTF? No more sodas, burgers, ice cream, or any of that crap for you!!!!!!!!!!!

Shit, my paternal grandmother had exactly one heart attack, and I ain't seen her since then. That stuff is SCARY.

No not scary enough to make me worry about my health or mal doings....

Ah well, in truth, there are probably lots worse ways to go, but be sure to try to hang out a while.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Oddly enough, Susan, I was not seriously terrified......just a bit concerned. Don't ask...I have no idea how I remained cool and calm. Maybe nature steps in an provides this so we don't make matters worse?

My husband rarely gets angry.....he gets even. lol At first he was relieved and the more he let it bother him, the more upset he got. BUT...it's all just a memory now.

Thanks, Susan. Nice of you to visit.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

I'm sure this must have been so terrifying for you. I am 54 right now and have often wondered if I ever do have a heart attack will I get have enough of a warning time to make it to emergency. I can imagine how angry your husband was that the hospital didn't catch this on the Friday night when you first went in.

Amazing story and thanks for sharing it.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton

damn.. this was like a rude awakening voted must read and shared Frank


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

teaches......True. Medical Science does amazing things.

And You have done an amazing thing too! Congratulations on your 2012 Hubbie award!!


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

What a scare! My hubby recently had two stents placed in his heart for this reason. It is great that today there is so much out there to help us know the signs and then prevent this. Thanks for sharing your personal story.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

I am happy and relieved for all of you. Good thing he has woman to look after him and REMIND him!! MEN!! Another day, another crisis....We just never know, do we Jaye? Each day is a precious gift.

Sleep well, Mom.


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

I went to visit my son in the hospital this afternoon. He's now in a regular room and is feeling okay, expects to be released tomorrow. He's already been given dietary and new medicine information, and told me he managed to eat broccoli for lunch with no salt! His fiancee' is making sure to ask all the questions that he might forget to ask whenever a doctor comes around. Right now, he's motivated to follow doctor's orders and take care of his health, and she's motivated to remind him.

I feel much more relaxed this evening and believe I will sleep well tonight. (Big sigh!)

Jaye


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

I don't think too many people would question an EKG or a blood enzyme test. Obviously, in my case, the Medical pros were satisfied. The thing is, if it's a "sneaky" attack as apparently mine was and perhaps your son....Drs. don't justify ordering an angiogram if the preliminary tests are OK. It's either a mystery "fluke" or a huge error on the part of the staff who do these tests and then read them.

In any event, your son and I got lucky. He will get his instructions. What's most important is, he'll probably be much more vigilant with most things and not ever consider himself TOO YOUNG to have a heart attack. "Chafing at the bit," is a good sign......means he's feeling AOK!


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

Hi, Paula....It's amazing to me, also, but I'm so glad I read your hub because the scenario is eerily similar. It made me realize a "normal" EKG didn't prove my son wasn't having a heart attack (which I would not have considered before reading about your experience). Armed with that knowledge, I was very insistent (did I mention "nagging?"). I think, by Friday morning, the increased pain helped to convince him the ER was the place to be.

I'm sure he will leave the hospital with instructions for dietary and other changes to help prevent future problems. I talked with him on the phone a few minutes ago, and he's "chafing at the bit" wanting to be out of that hospital bed now that he isn't hurting and irritable that he isn't being released today. Patience is not his greatest strength!

Thanks for your good wishes, Paula, and thanks again for sharing your story. It really did make an impression on me--to good purpose!

Jaye


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Jaye.....You CAN'T be serious!!! OMG, woman! I am floored. I'm also so glad you INSISTED your son go to the ER.

I cannot believe this occurred so soon after you reading my hub.......and the scenario is too similar!! 100% blockage? and he's so young!

Well, Jaye, this is an experience you and your son will not soon forget. I wish him the very best of health......and his MOM as well.!!!!


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

Paula....I am so glad I read this account and had your experience to use for factual information when talking to my son last night. His left arm was hurting severely, and--like most 40-somethings--he didn't want to give up his "macho" image and go to the ER. Finally, between the pain and my nagging (er, urging), he gave in and decided it was time to go to the ER. (I don't give up easily when I think I'm right!)

His EKG was normal, and the ER personnel said his lab work was due back in ONE HOUR (Don't ask me why it could possibly take so long to get lab work back for a potential heart attack victim in a big hospital!!! There is no reasonable answer for that one.) By then, his arm had stopped hurting and he felt foolish ("I feel fine, Mom" he insisted.) So he was determined to leave the ER.

However, very early this morning the pain was back in his arm and also in his chest. I told him what happened to you two days after you had a normal EKG at the ER. I told him VIVIDLY.

So ... back he went to the ER, where he was told he'd definitely had a heart attack. For some reason, the ER docs were able to get his blood enzymes back quickly this morning (and they were NOT good). Within an hour a heart catheter procedure was performed and within another hour a stent had been placed in one of his arteries that had 100% blockage. He's doing fine now, and I cannot tell you how relieved his mom is!

By the way, after he was moved to the step-down unit and could have visitors briefly, I went in to see him. The relaxation meds had worn off by then, and he was asking when he could have something to eat! Sound familiar?

THANK YOU, my dear Paula. You've done your good deed for the year (maybe the decade) by describing what a heart attack can feel like and even how you can "pass the EKG test" while in the midst of having one! The way he described his physical pain and general "blah" feeling (last night and this morning) were so close to your own descriptions I felt sure in my heart he was having a heart attack.

Thanks for giving this mom the facts needed to nag (er, coax) a son to go back to the ER!

Jaye


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

OMG! That is terrible!! I'm glad you kicked that Dew addiction!


Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 4 years ago from Virginia

I used to think I was helping my weight control by skipping breakfast....but when I was opening up my grocery store in the morning...it seemed I always got a Diet Mountain Dew and at least one doughnut...normally two doughnuts. During my peak Dew drinking days I would drink a 6 pack of 16 oz Dews.....and I wondered why my heart was beating so fast laying in the dark when I tried to go to sleep.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

You mean doughnuts and Dew isn't a healthy breakfast? DRAT!


Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 4 years ago from Virginia

Thanks for sharing your tale.....glad to see that the last 10 years have gone smoothly. The picture you painted laying in bed is one I can easily picture....about a month after my father passed away...I seemed to have that "a bit off" feeling....after about a week of that....I headed to the doctor and they freaked out about my blood pressure.....to make the story short....changed my diet, started to exercise, lost 40 pounds and can sleep at night again. But boy do I miss my favorite breakfast......doughnuts but with a Diet Mountain Dew......lol (I have been thinking my year long live change might make a decent hub)

So I will take your advice and try my hardest to avoid a heart attack....thanks for sharing...I admire the humor you include in your serious subject matter hubs.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

My goodness, TT....I see no excuse for Drs continually sending your Mom home without looking closely at her health complaints and issues, before it became disastrous!!

I can appreciate and relate to your love of Drs. I have those same feelings. When we've had enough of the nonsense, we learn to be our own best advocate and do whatever necessary to receive the treatment we need!

Bless you.............


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Sunshine........My dear Optimistic friend......In 20 years, I will be 84......even if I have been blessed to be hangin on until then.......I'll be too old to be writing emails (or even SEE the keyboard!) to people whose names and faces no longer match......and I'll be babbling about what exciting things happened to me when I was 30, but forgetting what I did yesterday............But if a miracle happens...YOU will definitely be the first one I text to say I'm doin BETTER!!!!!! LOL xxoo


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

Great read, FP! Reminds me of the many times the docs would send my mom home until she finally had a huge one and ended up having quadruple bypass. She was in and out of the hospital for almost a year and one day, after being released before I thought she should have been, she died in her sleep at home. I love doctors. I am so glad you came out of it healthy and as funny as always. :)


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 4 years ago from Orlando, FL

WTG Effer! Not even a blockage could take you down! I'm shocked it even considered doing so! Thank you for sharing this scary time in your life, you never know whose life you are going to save by doing so. 10 years and doing great...I'm looking forward to hearing 20 years and doing even better! :)


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

I think that was then...and now Drs are not only taking women and heart attacks more seriously, they're making sure women know the statistics. Besides.....without the appropriate testing and being read/translated by someone highly skilled.......symptoms of a heart attack vary in type and severity. It's really up to US to know. Know our own bodies and health issues, know the facts, be alert and most important.....better safe than sorry.....I know too many women who don't want to "make a big deal over nothing." and I myself have tendency to think that way........but it's usually SOMETHING......and after all, what can it hurt to be checked out. Thank you for commenting.


mary615 profile image

mary615 4 years ago from Florida

I have read that doctors don't take symptoms of a heart attack seriously from women. They certainly should. I do hope you are OK now. My Father- In- Law went to the ER thinking he was having a heart attack. They sent him home, said it was indigestion. He died 3 days later from a massive heart attack.

I voted this Hub UP, etc.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Dexter......and you, my friend would be one of the first to agree that......"humor," is how we successfully survive serious issues!!! LOL.


Dexter Yarbrough profile image

Dexter Yarbrough 4 years ago from United States

Fpher! Only you could add a bit of humor to a serious issue! STAY WELL AND HEALTHY! We need you around here!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Peanutritious.......It was a bit scary, yes.....but for some reason, I never felt panic. I think perhaps, for some individuals a sort-of resolve kicks in under stress and pressure. I got lucky.

I'm happy for your Dad's victory and long-term wellness. Good for him!!

Thanks for stopping by............


Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK

Wow! What a terrifying ordeal to go through! I love the way you saw the humour in it all. You've got guts girl! I'm glad you are fully recovered now. My Dad had a heart attack in his early 50's but thankfully is fit and well at the age of 65 now. Voted up up up!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Tammy.......First of all.....CONGRATULATIONS on your 2012 Hubber Award!! You are well-deserving!

Yes....I am still here, to continue to make some people happy and annoy others!! LOL!


tammyswallow profile image

tammyswallow 4 years ago from North Carolina

You really amaze me. You have been through so much in your life and you could never guess it by seeing your photo or through getting to know your spirit in your writing. I can't imagine how that felt. I am glad you are still here and able to tell your story. You are one tough cookie!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Thank you Angela....I'm hearing your brother! None of these crisis type medical situations is anything you want to ever deal with.

I had so many people offering "free advice" afterwards.......and I listened politely, but the truth is, all I intended to do was put it all behind me....not get paranoid or start fretting and focusing on negative ideas.

I had it...the Dr. fixed it....it's over and I'm a happy, lucky girl......woman.......old lady......whatever.....I'm planning on staying around for awhile!!

Thanks Sis!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Kelly....I'm glad you appreciated my explanation...because I was very intent upon sharing my message in plain, ordinary terms....and describe so that your average individual can understand.....

Yeah, Kel...Jim and I are a couple of old coots that laugh at each other all day. Believe it or not, even first thing at 5:oo in the morning, we start cracking up about something. I would be totally miserable in a relationship without "humor"......it's just as vital as "communication." You and Dave are a HAPPY couple........Happy couples laugh a lot........Thanks Kelly.....and CONGRATS again, on being chosen for the Hub award for MISS "FRIENDLY!!"" That's as prestigious as Miss Congeniality in the Miss America Pageant!!! Hey!

Thanks Kelly!!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Ruchira........yes...this was 10 years ago and I've had no issues at all since then. My cardiologist takes all the credit....he says he does "excellent work"....I wish they were as willing to admit when they screw up!!! HA!!! Thank so much Ruchira.... from my heart to yours!!


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 4 years ago from Central Texas

Excellent -- and interesting Hub on a heart attack (and I'm going to try to take your advice about not having one). When my Bro had a stroke - -and after he had recovered sufficiently to talk again -- his advice was much like yours "If someone offers you a stroke -- pass on it -- the damned things suck!" This was so perfectly and cleverly written -- thanks -- and excellent health to you in the future! Best/sIS


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Nell....Fri night...the first time....they did an Ekg and a blood enzyme.....no angiogram. No way to see a blockage until that is done. Had my enzymes showed signs, they'd have probably admitted me and done an agio..... but that didn't happen. To this day, My cardiologist does not understand how they got a good blood enzyme reading on Fri. night. Basically, he was trying to let us know that they EFFED up, big time.....

My first visit , I wasn't scared.......but the 2nd time when I was in such excruciating pain....yeah, I was a little scared.. Thanks Nell.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Paula - oh my goodness woman! I thought I was gonna have a heart attack reading this! My gosh...and you know so often I fear that people put so much stock in a clear EKG. I am so glad that you listened to your instricts. When those thoughts come to mind they should never be ignored.

I totally understood what you mean about feeling annoyed with yourself but you gotta listen to the clues your poor body is trying to give you. Thankfully your husband didn't want you to jump out the car too:) hahah You crack me up because you know you remind me of me and Dave and how we behave together - it's great isn't it?

I appreciate you being straight forward about those symptoms too - I always wished that someone would describe those better. My family has a terrible heart history...so I expect it will be my trouble as well. My uncle died once already from complete heart failure....then he died in a car wreck too...but he's fine now! LOL They revived him both times and I am not lying or joking!


Ruchira profile image

Ruchira 4 years ago from United States

omg...Paula you made me skip a heart beat with all this drama happening...the punch line that it happened 10 years back gave me a sigh of relief that you are doing fine :))

wishing you blissful years of happiness, my friend! Yes, docs do suck when it comes to diagnosing a problem; all they are concerned is the insurance and what kind and how much will be covered :(


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

Hi, Oh my God! that must have been one hell of a scary time! I can't believe that they sent you home the first time! why didn't they see the blockage? I am so glad you are fine today, and as someone said above, this will really help others if and when it happens, nell


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

writer20......I am OK and the experience woke me up to many things I probably needed to be awakened to! Thanks!


writer20 profile image

writer20 4 years ago from Southern Nevada

Goods news you're okay. You nearly scare to death

Voted up and awesome, Joyce


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Jools.....well, sweet lady....if you've read some of my comment replies, you already know I did not always do everything right to protect myself from the little things that can happen to any one of us at any time.....

The only thing in life I go way overboard with is .......loving, scuse me....adoring my kids, family and a few friends to the point of insanity.

All else,.. I do ...and sometimes, I don't.......I put forth the effort and often say, "to hell with it." I'm a good girl, I'm a bad girl......and sometimes in between.

It may have been disastrous, but the fact is, it wasn't......Must be a reason, huh? Make me more grateful? Teach me to live in the damned MOMENT and stop stressing over the BULL****? Give me more time to be a better person...more often to more people?

Probably all of it. I'm not one to look a gift-horse in the mouth. I work on all of it....everyday! Thanks Jools....you are a winner!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Boomer nurse........In no way am I an example of someone who DID ALL THE RIGHT THINGS. I did the things I felt were important and sensible....but then, probably not all the time. I avoided some No-Nos and had a devil may care attitude toward others.

In other words, I'm your typical, average American woman, Mom and worker-bee.

I figured a little friendly chat in simple terms would hit home for a lot of people. Looks like this works the best. I know it always has for me.

When someone has been through something.....I want to sit and talk to them, face to face. Don't show me the medical records......that doesn't do it for me. Thank you for your great comment!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

bill....I will try not to do that again, believe me. I was really against doing it the first time......but that's me...always have to try something outrageous at least once!

My intention here was to have a little coffee klatch with my hubber friends and put this out there as in a bit of chit chat......simple terms and just the facts. All the brains can figure it out for themselves as it applies to them......I believe it worked.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Glimmer.....I simply don't do well with all sorts of drama. Sh** happens. We are all subject to the incidents, accidents and traumas in this life.

I don't handle things nearly as calmly when it's happening to someone else......but I do have control over my actions and reactions in my own cases.

I wasn't a total Angel about taking care of myself. I have the same faults we all may have in terms of "taking care of one's self. Fact is, we can only do so much anyway. What will be, will be. No need to go nuts in either direction. Moderation will do just fine.

There is NO such thing as perfect health....nothing can be perfect in an imperfect human........

Bottom line? Everyday is a "gift." Wouldn't you agree? You do? Then get out there and do your thing, friend!!! lol......


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Jaye, my dear friend.....Well, you see, years ago, when a crisis occurred in my life.....I had a highly emotional Italian mother, the same A-Type husband, 4 adult sons who TAKE UP ARMS, most of my friends are the PANIC type and my sister, the nurse, always felt the need to literally FLY toward the crisis and "supervise"..........

Somebody around here had to be calm, cool and collected.....

BTW....this was right around the time I began to evolve into the Professional Procrastinator I am today. My twisted mind must have decided....if I leave something to be done "tomorrow"....there'll always be a tomorrow.......How's that for a stupid explanation of a bad habit?? Rational?

Thanks, Jaye......I ALWAYS like hearing from you!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Kathy.....It's stories like mine and millions of others out there, that should be shared ...if only for the fact that, as you say, knowing my experience "could very well save someone else."

Nothing is ever going to happen to us....right??


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

chloelo.....I suppose a little bit of "scare" isn't a bad idea for most of us.....There comes a time when all of us, women especially, must come to terms with the fact that we are not the Super Heroes we think we are.

There are a millions stories out there.....and telling them is the thing to do, so others can learn from them....


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

Paula, you are amazing! You can still laugh during a crisis (always an asset in my opinion) even when you're at the centre of the storm. I am SO glad that they got you fixed up but it sounds to me like you did everything right to give yourself a chance; they were less useful (at first). I love the way you've written this - you tell it like it is with just a smidgeon of introspection and it's easier to imagine ourselves in this situation - it can happen to the healthiest people and reacting to the warning signs is key.


Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 4 years ago from South Carolina

So glad everything turned out okay.

This was written in such an entertaining way that I had to check several times to see if it was fiction. You sure had me following the story with bated breath a few times, and had me laughing at other times, despite the horrible circumstances.

You are a prime example that there are times when doing all the right things in terms or lifestyle just isn't enough to prevent a heart attack or other serious illness and one must always heed symptoms, even if they've recently been told everything is alright.

Medical tests are never foolproof and doctors do make mistakes in diagnoses.

Thanks for sharing your experience as it may help other women seek medical attention when they don't feel right.

Voted up across the board.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Damn, Paula, don't do that again! Who would read my hubs if you had the big one? I mean seriously!

Okay, seriously, thanks for the wake up call. I have never experienced any of that but I am, at sixty-three, well aware of the symptoms should they occur and I am also, at sixty-three, well aware of my stubbornness and willingness to shake it off as no big deal.

Message received my friend! I'm very happy you are with us! I kind of like having you around.


Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

Holy Moly! This is a great hub and glad to know that you are doing well. A friend of mine thought she was coming down with the flu and was at work when several coworkers convinced her to go to the ER. She too had had a heart attack. She was in good shape, took care of herself and is around my age. She's doing well, but it really hit home that I need to take better care of myself. Love that you took the funny route to discuss this. Voted up and shared!


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

Paula....You are probably the only person I know who could write about her OWN heart attack, fill your readers with dread (even though we know you survived), yet have us laughing during the same account!

I, too, am so glad you made it and are doing GREAT. Take good care of yourself.....Jaye


Lucky Cats profile image

Lucky Cats 4 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

Dear fpherj48, I am so glad that you survived this and are here to tell the story. Though I've only just begun to be acquainged with you, I relate to your style and sense of "fairness" I detect in your writing and comments. Your descriptions of symptoms, I bet, will help others...you may never know it but, I would be willing to bet that this hub will serve as a life saver to someone...to me, for sure; as I am going to be very aware of such symptoms and feelings. We think we're impervious; we think we're immune...the exception but, SURPRISE! it ain't necessarily so!

Your humorous look at a very serious situation; and your writing style are so easy to read and relate to...as if you are taking to your readers....very very good...and helpful and useful...Awesome, too, because you shared this "near miss" with us...I am so glad you "lived to tell the tale." Kathy


chloelozano 4 years ago

Wow! This article scared me a little. I can't believe they sent you home! I am glad that you were able to get to the hospital so quickly after the pains started the second time. Thanks for sharing your story with us.

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