Tuesday, March 1, 2016

One Happy Heart Patient!

Okay, fine. I guess I'm just going to have to be a happy "heart patient." On one of my last visits with my PCP, I argued that I wasn't one, but she just told me we could disagree on that point. Today, for the second time, I asked the cardiologist to reverse the CHF diagnosis. No surprise - it was a "no" again.

His nurse did tell me I have the better kind of  CHF though and she agreed with me that it is mild - but must be managed. So I suppose I will just concede and be content to be a heart patient....at the Oklahoma Heart Hospital. Sigh.

But there is some real good news today and still a few modifications to be made. He had all the results from my tests they did last week. The worst of it is not really all that bad - but several things that just need to be closely monitored. I guess I'll be making more trips out to OHH. I do have a leaky valve but it's not bad - just gotta keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn't get worse on me. My blood work also indicated that I am "pre-diabetic" which translates to me to tighten my diet up more (ie - get rid of the other white stuff - sugar.) Those were the big, little areas among a few other ones that just need to be monitored to be sure everything stays in check.

But the good news? My bp was perfect - and I was even AT the dr. office - I think that's a first! So- I talked him into letting me try going without the diuretic. He agreed - with the understanding that if I start retaining water I can't just start taking it again - I have to call the office. He told me I am not allowed to be my own doctor. (He already knows me well.) And for the first time I was told to watch my water intake  - if I'm not running. On running days I can drink more - but on non-running days the nurse said not to drink too much.... acting like I have CHF or something! lol Honestly - that was a little weird...not supposed to be real...for me.

So basically, I am learning to control the symptoms with diet and exercise. But I'm not off the hook - and actually have to be more diligent about it going forward. I realize if I don't monitor everything closely and stay on top of it all that I could have to go back on medications - so the plan is to be super good so I can stay off. Hopefully I won't need them.

The staff is very supportive of my running and some of my blood work and other stats they say are due to it. So in some ways the running is very helpful. Of course that's as long as I don't overdo it.

You wanna know the funny part? I explained to my nurse (she said I could use her name - but I told her I'd need this in writing!) how I've been monitoring myself and managing symptoms. I told her I weigh every morning that checks for water weight gain and if I gain more than 3 pounds  then there's no running. I take my BP and pulse every morning to be sure it's staying in my normal range. And I monitor my heart on the run even in taekwondo since I figured out how, as well as wear the compression socks all the time. The nurse kept affirming that I am doing everything I should - she said, "we are going to get along good -you're so compliant." And, "you're going to be a good patient." I just laughed and asked her if I could get that in writing - she said no but I could use her name! lol

I guess it's good to know my own customized monitoring system is what I'm supposed to be doing. and I'm happy I'm off everything but aspirin for now! It's still early on in the journey but I'm feeling better about it. I feel like I'm being taken care of very well. That should help me be good! lol I'm a happy heart patient who is still running with CHF where....

Every Step's a Victory

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