Friday, January 21, 2011

IV's Suck

No, really they do! 5 vials of blood came out of that tiny tube! But not before Nurse Jennifer tried twice to get the IV started in my other arm. I thanked her profusely for not fishing around for a vein. She kindly found another nurse who said "Oh, here's a good vein. In your right HAND!" It didn't really hurt unless I moved my hand or wrist. Did I mention I'm right-handed? So, yeah, it hurt.

I only visit the Emergency Room about every 10 years or so. Last time I went for chest pain and shortness of breath. Luckily it turned out that it was a panic attack and I was discharged after only a few hours. Scared me to death though.

Since then, I've had too many panic attacks to count. I know what they feel like and I know how to calm myself down and avoid any unneeded hospital visits.

About half way to work this morning at 7:00 or so my heart started to pound and I couldn't catch my breath. My left arm went numb and I debated whether to turn around and go home, pull over and call 911 or drive to the hospital around the corner from work. I chose the hospital. I found my way into the Emergency Room and managed to fill out most of their paperwork (which was no small feat since I was shaking and couldn't remember my own zip code). I called my sweetie and was whisked back to a room.

After my arms became pin cushions I had an EKG. I didn't mind practically exposing my boobs to have the electrodes attached but then they had to put them on each of my calves (calfs? not cows, legs). I may not have shaved my legs in a week two or three weeks. The poor tech almost had to part the hair to put on the electrodes. EMBARRASSING!

Every cell in those 5 vials of blood screamed NORMAL. EKG screamed NORMAL. Chest xray? Also normal. The final diagnosis was "STRESS REACTION". Which translates to there is nothing wrong with you, you hypochondriac or Panic Attack. The doctor mumbled something about not ignoring these kinds of symptoms since they could be something significant "as we age". She didn't mean WE, she meant ME. I wanted to slap her (with the hand that didn't have the IV in it).

I would appreciate if my panic attacks could be a little more consistent with the symptoms because my arm going numb was NOT expected.

My sweetie soothed my pin cushioned arms and panic-y brain by taking me shopping. Yeah for retail therapy! I bought these:

Nothing soothes a hypochondriac like 5 bottles of antibacterial soap!

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