Monday, March 8, 2010

My trip... to hospital... may be TMI*...


Unsuccessful procedure.

The specialists ran out of time. It’s too high up in the atrium and the catheter just doesn’t bend back on itself enough to get the right angle. They did manage to zap some, but not all, of the extra electrical pathway. The cardiologist will have to try a different approach next time....

Trans-septal puncture it is. Will have to wait 12 months or more so that I can have x-rays again.

I had morphine and am still on some codeine and am bunged up, well, I was. I think it’s working again now. That’s more than a pain in the bum!

I was under for three-and-a-half hours, from 1 to 4:30-ish. Then still under until about 5:30-ish when they woke me fully and I was coming out of the anaesthetic. Then into the ward at 6pm. Wait another hour, have a blood test to make sure the heparin (anticoagulant) was out of my system, then pull out the four PIPLINE sized catheters (Okay, they were 18 gauge, about the size of a pencil!!). Then pressure for a few minutes while the wound sealed slightly. Then not allowed to move until 9:35pm, then four hours of observation. They didn’t let me go home.

Left hospital some time after 11am Wednesday, got food on the way home, and arrived home about 1pm. Didn’t get enough food on the way home.

Saturday 14/2
Slept most of Wed, Thursday. Went to GP on Friday. Dressing changed. Not too badly bruised. Healing well. Chest is killing me, asthma from the switch-off-tachycardia drug (adenisone I think), sore throat from breathing tube, fingers still quite drunk even yesterday.


I have a job, too. They offered me the job on the Friday after the procedure, the job I went for last Friday. I’m chuffed. Scared. All of the above. We’ll see how I go. It’s local here at Gatton, thank God!

Went to RSL AGM last night and talked about OSK. That was interesting. Couldn’t sing the national anthem, not able to get enough air in the pipes. I’m over that. And being so tired, too.

I’ve had supraventricular tachycardia since I was in my 20s. It flared up when I was in my 40s, after not having it for years.

He’s got rid of the ventricular stuff, now it’s just atrial.

But I am having bum trouble because of the codeine and morphine (the morphine was only 1mg dose for pain after the procedure when I was conscious, whopping headache and sore lungs, and it was amazingly good for the pain – druggies talk about “the rush” which is the feeling of the drug going through the bloodstream, they might like it, I find the sensation most unpleasant!).

Codeine bungs up your bum, particularly if you are susceptible. And that’s a bugger of a pain.


I’ve had this SVT condition since I was in my mid twenties and it went away when I stopped partying – I’d never been able to get to my GP when I had the tachycardia. My GP thought it was PAT (paroxysmal atrial tachycardia) and gave me some anti-anxiety tablets to take when my heart raced. These tablets would knock me out for six hours if I had the tachycardia, but had no effect without the rapid heart rate. I’d wake up and the rapid heart rate would have settled down. When I was in my early 40s the tachycardia returned, the anti-anxiety tablets still knocked me out, but the tachycardia would still be there.

One day I visited my GP with a rapid heart rate (221bpm) and was carted off to the local hospital. After a period of observation I was injected with a drug called adenisone and the heart rate returned to normal, just like that, she says clicking her fingers. The adenisone makes me feet faint and clammy, and I get a bit of a funny feeling (rush), when it’s injected, and I flatline for a second... but then I’m fine. Eventually I was put in the care of a cardiologist (when I could get in to see one), and I was put on bloodpressure tablets and a drug to keep my heart rate regular. There was a period for a while a few years ago when I was in hospital once a day for a week with the tachycardia. One day I had to drive myself there twice.
In 2005 I had the first procedure which was unsuccessful. last time I had the procedure on 26 August 2005 the specialists ran out of time and the procedure was unsuccessful. While the first procedure was carried out I was under very light anaesthetic and light xray so that the specialist could map the extra electrical pathway in my heart and see what they were doing with the catheters. Four catheters.
I decided to have the procedure again and the cardiologist finally agreed. I was booked in for October last year, but that was cancelled.

On Tuesday 9 February 2010 I was admitted to hospital for a procedure, routine for a cardiologist. I had to have a catheterisation so that they could ablate the extra electrical pathway in my heart which causes it to beat rapidly (221 bpm) when stimulated – this can be from too much caffeine (doesn’t take much!), not enough sleep, being startled awake when sleeping, boozing or smoking (I haven’t smoked since 1990, and I don’t drink much these days, either). This was a second attempt,
I decided to have the procedure again because if successful it would mean that I wouldn’t need to take some of the drugs I have, and these drugs make me tired and react with other drugs I take or may need to take for other conditions I have, for example, asthma.

*Don't complain to me, I warned you.


bruce said...

'Codeine bungs up your bum, particularly if you are susceptible. And that’s a bugger of a pain.


Yeah been there!

Oh well hope they get it all eventually.
Hang in there.

cav said...


You're still alive then?

That's nuthin', wait 'til I start blogging about MY medical problems.

A good read though....