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Michelle F.

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  1. Thanks everyone. I fainted on the "rich man's tilt table" a couple of years ago. lol (actually, it wasn't funny at all!) I was dx'd with the NCS, but I've had suspicions of POTS, though cardiologist said I was classic NCS. Anyway, she's helped me very much treating my symptoms. With these recent bradycardia symptoms on waking, I notified her of the change. She decreased the dosage and I am a couple of days into that dosage. I did let her know about my bedtime caffeine with the holter. I usually avoid caffeine because it makes me feel so bad...increases my HR...as evidenced on the holter. I have stopped monitoring my BP & HR at home because overall I've felt better the past several months. With things changing, I think I will spot check it. I do know that my bottom number (at rest) has increased over the past few years. It's been almost equal with my top number on a few occasions! Thanks again, Michelle
  2. In preparation for going to Africa this next week, I have tried to cover all bases. Last week, I sent a quick email to my cardiologist and let her know that I have had a new feeling the past several weeks (that I've kinda ignored). When I wake up after lying down (whether nap or full-night's sleep), I feel like my heart is beating a very slow and chaotic tune. Sometimes a forceful push/pump will wake me up. Recently, I felt like that forceful push woke me up and that my heart may have stopped beating prior to it....don't know why I think this. Anyway, I received a prompt reply that I needed to come in for a holter as soon as possible. I've never worn one, but went the next day. I wore it for 24 hours and the holter was picked up by Fed Ex from me on Monday; sent to Nebraska, I think; and I received a call from my cardiologist's office in Alabama in less than 24 hours from the time I sent the holter. The nurse said my HR was 146 when I went to bed (I'd had a caffeinated coffee because a friend suggested I do unusual things so that the doctor could see what my heart does- don't know that I should have done that though). Anyway, the next morning my HR was 34; then 51; on up to 80 and 91 varying throughout the day. These were preliminary results, so she didn't have the complete report. My orders were to decrease my Toprol to 1/2 tab (rather than 1 whole) in the morn and keep 1/2 at night. I am to call them on Monday and let them know how I feel. I've been told I have NCS, but does any of this sound like POTS? I realize I'm on Toprol, so it may be hard to tell. Is it surprising that my HR went to 146 with a cup of coffee?! Should I be concerned about the 34 on waking up? Is there something I can do, other than changing dosage to get my HR up some in the morning? I'd appreciate any thoughts. Thanks all! Michelle
  3. Thanks so much for everyone's input. I waited until I met with my new neuro yesterday and he gave me the all clear. So, today, I had the vaccines. So, I guess it looks like I really may be sailing bon voyage for most of December. Michelle
  4. Thanks, Julie. I am so up and down with this decision! Your advice to delay until all the tests are in is a good one. I can see me giving that advice to someone else, but common sense is sometimes hard to use with myself when I am right in the middle of it. Thank you.
  5. Thank you for your response. I will be in Arusha, Tanzania and surrounding areas on a mission trip with my family. Three of my family members went in May and now they are taking us all back. It is now in their hearts, too. Any and all information is greatly appreciated! Michelle
  6. I am scheduled to go to Tanzania, Africa from 12/3 to 12/28. I have known for a few months, but I have not been vaccinated because I wanted to be sure I felt up to the trip first. I think I can do it, so I need to move forward with my plans...which include vaccinations. The Yellow Fever Vaccination (YFV) is required for re-entry into the U.S., unless you have a medical waiver. I don't know if I should have it or not. I don't know how to find a doctor who can reliably tell me I should not...if that's the case. I have a new neurologist who has run MANY tests, but I won't have those results until next week. From them, I do know that I have carpal tunnel and the eeg showed some slowing on the left side of my brain. I am 43 years old. Anyway, if I have the YFV, I need to have it at least 10 days before possible exposure. I see the doctor for test results on the 10th day before my departure. One of the conditions the neuro is ruling out is Myasthenia Gravis. This is one of three conditions specifically mentioned for not having the vaccine if you have it. I called the neuro and the nurse said he said that I should be able to take it. I just don't feel I have enough information yet to make an informed decision. I don't know if the benefits outweigh the risks for me. I don't know how to pursue a waiver if I need it, either. Any advice, information or input?? Anyone? Thank you! Michelle F.
  7. Today was a day of follow-up doctor visits after my initial ER trip. The doctor in the ER didn't tell me to follow-up, I just did. Anyway, I am glad I did. After seeing my urologist and gynecologist; and having a pelvic ultrasound, a renal ultrasound and a KUB x-ray, the apparent cause of my excruciating pain and odd reaction to it was a ruptured ovarian cyst. The cyst is still there and measures 2 cm. Because it is irregular in shape, the gynecologist believes it ruptured, giving it some relief. She will do another pelvic ultrasound in 6 weeks to be sure it is resolving itself...which is what she expects. She also said every person's body is different and that she suspects that the symptoms I had with my hands, feet, etc. were my bodies reaction to the severe pain. She let me know that I should have had an ultrasound or x-ray in the ER and that is not normal....she was not happy with the way I was not checked out more thoroughly. BTW, I didn't go to the hospital where she works, but a smaller one. I just didn't think I could handle the extra few minutes to get to the big hospital.....because of the pain. I will know better next time. Also, the urologist said my urine was clean as a whistle. Thanks everyone for your help! Michelle F.
  8. That is interesting! Not medically speaking, but I was classified as a black female when I obtained my gun permit. They got the female part right! I got all the way to my van before I caught it. When I went back into the sheriff's office, the black lady who issued it and I got a good laugh. My skin is pretty pale.
  9. Thank you, mkoven. You have been helpful to me in the past about this. The rheumatologist didn't offer a dx with my hypermobility issues. He seemed more concerned about addressing my fibromyalgia issues. He was a good listener though, so I asked him if he had any reason to suspect I had Ehler Danlos, or something of the like. He acknowledged that I had some hypermobility, but that it was benign....all the while investigating my "normal" looking skin. One other thought I have had is that I have an abdominal hernia, post surgery...hmmm....sounds consistent with connective tissue problems, doesn't it?. Thanks again. Michelle
  10. I will ask my doctor, too. Thank you! Michelle
  11. Thank you. A lot of what you said is over my head, but I will do a search for some of the things. I do not have POTS, but your information may help me connect some dots. I knew pain was not normal, but I just wasn't sure about inflammation. Thank you! Michelle F.
  12. Thank you, Thankful. (I like your name. ) EDS does keep coming up and I do highly suspect it. I went to a rheumatologist, but he said I have a benign condition...think he based it on my normal looking skin. I believe I do need to see someone for a clearer dx about the hypermobility issues I have. Of my five children, I can tell at least four of them "loose ligaments". I will look at your link. Thank you.
  13. I want to understand inflammation. Maybe some of you can help me. I went to a doctor about 7 years ago because I was tired of hurting. He was a sports medicine doctor and I was having some joint problems, but pain everywhere. He was thorough and I had a lot of testing. He ruled out all of the big things. He treated me with Celebrex for systemic? or chronic inflammation. I eventually took myself off of it..when my doctor was activated to go to Iraq. In hindsight, the only time I have been pain free in my adult life (I am 43) was when I was on Celebrex. Is inflammation normal with age? Does everyone have it? Why do I have it? How can I get rid of it? I have fibromyalgia...could it be related? Is there a more natural way of dealing with it than medication. I know so many people on here are going through so much more than I am. But as I sit here typing this, in tears, I am sooooo tired of hurting. Yes, I have my limbs, vision, most of my hearing, my beautiful family and my faith. But what more can I do to stop hurting?! Thank you everyone. This truly is one of those "But you don't look sick" things....because I just keep going....because I have to. Michelle F.
  14. Flop- Thanks so much for taking the time to post those very interesting pictures! I guess when I hear "x-ray", I think "bones". Last year I had recurring UTI's, with no prior history. A test was done that used dye (don't remember what it was called), but since they called it by it's more specific name, I didn't think of it as an "x-ray". Nothing was found and the urologist doubted that I had in fact had infections. He believed the specimens may have been tainted at the lab or my PCP's office. I had symptoms though..that's why I went in the first place. He did do a cystoscopy which revealed nothing unusual. He did say that I have some blood (not visible to the naked eye) in my urine and that some people just have that. Surely, whatever test they should have done....or will do, will look at the complete urinary tract though. Thanks so much. Very interesting and informative. I appreciate any thoughts and information you have to offer. Michelle F.
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