Hey lovely people,
I have a little update on my heart situation that I wanted to share with you & I thought I’d start it at the very beginning just in case you’ve missed my previous blog posts.
My heart was perfectly fine back in 2008. It was functioning as a normal heart would and it was strong & healthy. When I was diagnosed with cancer, I was told that the chemotherapy that I would be having could have a damaging effect on my heart.
After six cycles of Doxorubicin, Cisplatin and Methotrexate, the doctors found that, unfortunately, my heart had been weakened.
At the time, it didn’t matter too much to us as the damage was minimal and of course, our main focus was getting through the chemotherapy.
Over the years, I’ve had regular check-ups and although my left ventricle is impaired, there’s really been nothing major to report.
However, when I was sick with a kidney infection last year, I told the doctors that my palpitations had been getting worse. The kidney infection didn’t go away with the first round of antibiotics so I had to go back and visit the doctor again. Long story short, I ended up in an Assessment Unit in the hospital as my GP thought I may have a clot on my lung. You can read more about that here.
Luckily, there wasn’t anything there except the kidney infection but they did want to check up on my heart. I was due a check-up but hadn’t received an appointment so the doctor had a look on her computer to see when I was booked in.
I wasn’t! I’d fallen off the system!
The wonderful doctors in the assessment unit made sure that I had an appointment made with the cardiology department which led to me having more scans and a 24 hour heart monitor.
The results of the monitor showed that I had an abnormally fast heart beat and sometimes, my heart just stops completely for a few seconds. So, I was booked in for more scans.
I’ve now had the results of those scans back and they’ve shown that my heart is not beating as well as it should for someone of my age. To give you some figures, a normal ejection fraction (that’s how much blood is pumped out of your heart on each beat, I believe) is over 50% & should probably be higher than that for someone in their early 20’s like me. But mine is only at 45%.
The good news is that it’s easily treatable with medication and my cardiologist wants to prescribe me the tablets so that my heart will be a bit stronger. The bad news is that the tablets will be for life and I can’t get pregnant on them as they can cause birth defects. So if I want to have a family at some point, and I really do want to, then that’s gonna be pretty difficult especially since, without the tablets, my body may not be strong enough to carry a baby anyway.
Over the next few months, I’m going to be eating as well as I can, exercising & just getting a bit more healthy all round as this has been a big wake-up call for me. I need to take time to look after myself & when I go back in a couple of months, I’m hoping & praying that there may have been some improvement there!
So that’s basically an update for you guys – I know it’s a bit out of the blue, especially for this blog, but it was important to me that I share it with you.
Life is short & we need to concentrate on the important things 🙂
I hope you’re all doing okay!