Trapped Wind Or Not Trapped Wind? That Is The Question

5 Dec

Image result for funny nhs memesIf there was no NHS, it’s not an exaggeration to say that I’d be writing this in heaven right now. Okay, maybe there’s a little exaggeration – as far as I know, heaven doesn’t have wi-fi.

I was lying in bed reading, three weeks ago tonight, when I had sharp chest pain on the left side. I did wonder for a moment, ‘Am I having a heart attack?’ but it soon passed and because there had been nothing weird about my arm, and no nausea or sweating, I realised it was trapped wind.

Over the following days I had some small sharp wind attacks but nothing like the first. Six days later, on a Tuesday morning, I was standing chatting to my friend Pam and I had another painful experience like the first, accompanied by a hot flush and then a cold sweat, and nausea. At the hot flush (menopause, obviously), I stepped outside into the rain to cool down, which explained the cold sweat. The nausea? Well, I had been thinking about housework.

I explained the horrible trapped wind situation to Pam and she urged me to get checked out, thinking of chest infections and pneumonia. That seemed a bit over the top for excess gas but, as it happened, I was booked in for a blood test for my cholesterol level at my doctor’s surgery the following morning. I did some research about chest pain that evening and every single website urged, ‘Tell a doctor!’

I didn’t really want to waste anyone’s time but I couldn’t get the website messages out of my head but, as I was there, I mentioned the chest pain to the nurse, who insisted that I ask to see the on-call doctor, who saw me within fifteen minutes and immediately referred me to the hospital as a precaution (I presented with conflicting symptoms), bypassing A&E and booking me directly into the Acute Care Unit at Stepping Hill Hospital.

The Hub ran me up to the hospital and I was quickly tested and blooded. The ECG showed ‘small anomalies’ and one blood test was ‘inconclusive’. I was re-tested and re-blooded and sent for a chest x-ray.

There was some waiting around, yes, but mostly for test results, all of which came back within an hour. The doctor suspected there was a blood clot on my lung (pulmonary embolism). A nurse injected me (painfully) with blood thinner (to dissolve any possible clots) in my stomach (I still have a bruise, two weeks later), and gave me one to take home to use the next day. I could not for the literal life of me inject myself but the Hub could and did, and that’s why I found myself screaming at him, unNike-like, ‘Just do it!’ when he was murmuring softly that ‘This is going to hurt, I’m afraid, sweetie.’Image result for pulmonary embolism funny

It didn’t hurt, despite the roll of fat he pinched firmly, as instructed. He jabbed instead of glided and there was very little pain and no bruising at all. Professional Nurse: 0, The Hub: 1, as far as he’s concerned. I reckon he stuck it into so much fat, it’s still floating around, lost without a clot to hiss in.

The hospital had me back on Friday for a V/Q scan, which is when gamma radiation is injected into the body to examine airflow and blood flow in the lungs. Yes, I was radioactive for a while there, and it had nothing to do with the Hub annoying me. After lunch (provided free of charge, both days), I had an echocardiogram – an ultrasound for the heart. That was ay-may-zing, to see my heart on telly, as it was beating in my chest. Wow, Just wow. I love science!

The result of all of this outstanding care is that I definitely have a pulmonary embolism – the pains in my chest were clot moving days – but our fabulous NHS caught it in time and I’m not going to die just yet (buses and absent-mindedness notwithstanding). Nor am I going to be bankrupted for the pleasure of not dying. I am being treated with medication and I have some follow-up appointments but, basically, it’s life as normal, and the bank balance is lighter only by the cost of a medic alert bracelet (if you cut me, do I not bleed copiously and have to be extra careful from now on?).

I have a wonderful husband who was there with me every step of the way (though he does like to needle me), despite his own ill-health. I made him stay home on the Friday, however, because he can just sit there, waiting (his M.E. allowing him to do little else), and I simply can’t. My Kindle felt unloved on Wednesday, when I was forced to talk to the Hub in the waiting room instead of reading; but was happy on Friday, as we idled away the time together between tests.

Our NHS isn’t perfect in everyday life – it can take weeks to get a non-urgent appointment – but in an emergency, there’s no better health care provider, and I have the breath in my lungs to prove it.

And finally…For several days afterwards, this song kept going through my head:

22 Responses to “Trapped Wind Or Not Trapped Wind? That Is The Question”

  1. elaine17 December 5, 2018 at 18:58 #

    Wow Linda, so glad to hear you are OK. This is a very light-hearted piece, but it must have been frightening. Well done NHS.

    Like

  2. Al December 5, 2018 at 19:27 #

    Any old excuse to avoid blogging, eh? Got to admit, a near death experience is pretty creative. Please, in the future, just tell us you’re tired of us and don’t put such a scare into your family! Here’s the good news, copious amounts chocolate in general and Maltesers in particular are the go to medicine for just this type of recovery. And you don’t have to get your blood tested all the time. Your blood will turn to chocolate and everyone knows chocolate doesn’t clot.

    If you haven’t deleted this as yet for my not taking your experience seriously enough, let me say how shocked I was to here about this. You are one lucky gal. These things are deadly if undiscovered. But then you know that now, don’t you. How blessed that you had the doctor appointment coming up when it did. And what awesome care you received! Kudos to the Hub for being such a stalwart wingman. I would have loved to have been a little fly on the wall while he was administering that shot! Cheers to you both and sincerest best wishes for a complete recovery. Our love, Al and Patty.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. thehutts December 5, 2018 at 19:37 #

    So glad to hear you’re OK and are getting the treatment you require. Take care and wishing you a speedy recovery. Love Sally

    Like

  4. colonialist December 5, 2018 at 19:55 #

    Shows that when a lookup of symptoms says, ‘See a doctor’ that is a good idea!
    You would have felt a bit of a clot if that bit of a clot had blocked something vital!
    I hope I am not elected to administer any jabs in the future — the thought makes me queasy.

    Like

  5. Ron. December 5, 2018 at 20:30 #

    Geez, TB; we don’t hear from you in ages and then….this. I don’t care, as long as I can keep hearing from you. Take yourself seriously, and by all means et Dr. Hub assist.

    My Beloved Sandra and I are both playing a lot more doctor than we’d like. We got along better when we were better, though; now it looks like we might nag each other to death.

    Enough chat from me. Be the best you can, don’t minimize, let the Hub help and for God’s sake Blog!

    posvibes

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Laughing Housewife December 15, 2018 at 17:45 #

      You know me – I like to make an entrance 🙂

      Glad to know you and Sandra are nagging each other – it’s better than not having someone to nag (the Hub would never have forgiven me if I’d died, because who would he have to vent to then?).

      Like

  6. RebSef December 5, 2018 at 23:06 #

    I hope you’re properly recovered soon!

    Like

  7. Confuzzled Bev December 6, 2018 at 12:58 #

    Yikes, I’m glad you had that appointment coming up when you did.
    Hurrah for the NHS! (After 12 years away I still miss it, although I can’t fault the care I’ve been given here in Switzerland it’s the PRINCIPLE of having to pay for health insurance!).

    I had to give myself daily injections to conceive our twins – and will have to again when we start trying to get pregnant again. I didn’t like it at all and actually cried about it some days, but it had to be done. Jan is diabetic and has to inject himself with insulin multiple times a day so really I can’t complain.

    Like

  8. Janie Jones December 6, 2018 at 15:58 #

    Wow. Thank goodness you are okay!

    Like

  9. sharechair December 7, 2018 at 12:27 #

    oh my. So glad to know you’re doing ok. That was quite the scare!!!

    Like

    • Frank Mosley December 7, 2018 at 14:04 #

      Hi Sis, thank God you caught it in time. I take it you are now on Warfarin (or one of it’s equivalents) Be careful of cuts, small ones just bleed a little longer than normal before clotting. Larger ones however are more akin to a dam with the sluice gates open. Ah well at least it’s one more thing you have in common with your big brother. BTW did the Doctors mention why you developed the clot(s)? DVT is the most common cause but there are others. Anyway take care of yourself and my regards to everyone.

      Like

      • The Laughing Housewife December 15, 2018 at 17:40 #

        Yo bro! Doctors don’t know why it developed but it wasn’t a DVT. I’m on something beginning with ‘R’ (can’t get my tongue around it but, yes, it’s an anticoagulant). xx

        Like

    • The Laughing Housewife December 15, 2018 at 17:41 #

      Well, it got me blogging again, so there’s always a silver lining 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  10. judyt54 December 17, 2018 at 17:19 #

    oh my dear girl. What events we do get ourselves into, eh. I had to give MYSELF one of those in the belly blood clot shots, and truly, it never hurt at all.

    Truly, when funny things happen (and you’re the only one who knows what ‘your normal” is, call someone. I’m so glad you’re writing this and not your husband (think about that), as a memorial.
    You are the only Tilly we have, and the world would be a dimmer place without you in it. Truly.

    Like

  11. Janie Jones December 26, 2018 at 19:49 #

    Hello! I hope you and yours are well and that you enjoyed a happy Christmas! Hugs, Janie

    Like

I welcome your comments but be warned: I'm menopausal and as likely to snarl as smile. Wine or Maltesers are an acceptable bribe; or a compliment about my youthful looks and cheery disposition will do in a pinch.

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