This morning on my Facebook an article popped up that caught my attention. What Every Woman Needs to Know About Blood Clots.
This article is a must read for everyone. Two years ago, I was 50 years old and pretty healthy for my age. True I probably needed to loose a few pounds, but I was eating properly (some of my fav foods I was eating were salads, including spinach, etc.). I was also walking three to four miles, five days a week. We weren't just sauntering either, we did this in about an hour.
It all started almost exactly two years ago. I was totally out of breath and had to slow down, and even stop during our walks. I thought maybe it was allergies, or out of shape. But how could I be out of shape since I had not stopped my workouts?
In June our family took a trip to Fall Creek Falls and did a lot of hiking. It was a blast!
I was really having a hard time with all this hiking. I thought, "Boy, this altitude is really getting to me." I can remember a particular hike down to one of the falls, I just had to hang back. Everyone had to come back the same way they went in, so I just waited.
A few weeks later, we took a trip down to Florida to visit with my family. By this time, my shortness of breath was gone. We went to Disney and walked all over creation. The next morning, I noticed I had a very slight swelling in my right ankle, but remembered I had bumped my leg pretty hard when we were on one of the rides. By that afternoon, the swelling was gone, and I didn't think much more of it. It really wasn't too bad to begin with. I remember asking everyone if they could tell if it was swollen, and the answer was, "hmmmm, maybe."
Fast forward to the end of August. My daughter and I headed up to Indiana to see her boyfriend who had just gotten off his two year mission in Chile. We drove the long 16ish hours, stopping in Tennessee and spending the night with my in laws. The whole trip, I was exhausted, but just thought it was the stress of the long drive. I love to travel, just don't like to do all the driving.
On the trip back when we stopped at my in laws again, I was totally out of breath. My mother in law kept asking if I was ok. I thought maybe I was developing some allergies or something.
We finally got back to Louisiana, and was getting Ashley ready to head on back to BYU. We went to the mall to pick some stuff up for her, and I couldn't even make it from the parking lot to the mall doors. We cut our shopping excursion short and I went home and went to bed.
My mom and dad had been in Colorado visiting with family and came through Louisiana on the way back to spend a few days. I had tried to get into the doctor, but had no luck. It was Friday, and they made an appointment for Tuesday. By this time, I could not even walk to the bathroom without sounding like I was having a severe Asthma attack. Mom told me she was taking me in to the walk in clinic...NOW!
We walked in and told them I was there for shortness of breath. Immediately they assumed we were bringing my mom in and came out to talk to us. As we were talking, they looked at me, and said, "Wait, it's you?" They rushed me back into the examining room and started a series of tests. Nothing came back alarming, and so they sent me on my way and told me they wanted to see me the next morning.
Saturday, we went back and still nothing. They ran some more tests and told me to come back the next day. The only thing that was not normal besides my shortness of breath, was my blood sugar was 45.
Sunday morning we went in, and still nothing. They sent me to the emergency room. When I got to the ER, and they saw my condition, they took me back immediately. Soon I was having a scan. Within a few minutes, the nurse came back with the results. The doctor 'bout had a cow. They quickly made me lay down on the gurney and whisked me into a private room. Now I was scared. They proceeded to tell my husband and I that I had clots....in my leg and numerous in both my lungs. They really didn't know how I had survived this long.
For the next five days, I was in intensive care flat on my back with a stint that went from my groin up to my lungs. fun! I underwent a serious of shots in my stomach. Oh, that was fun too (I hate needles). For the next six months I was on medication and gained a bunch of weight. Much of my diet had to change, as I could not eat any vitamin K, or at least had to limit them; meaning no more than 1/2 cup a day. That is hardly anything at all, and to think they tell you to eat mostly green leafy veggies. Nope, not if you are on blood thinners. I do believe that is why I gained so much weight; not to mention I had to quit exercising for awhile.
Now that it is all over with, and I am now off of the blood thinners and just taking a baby aspirin, I still get a little paranoid. I had no symptoms except the shortness of breath. Until this episode, I had not gone to a doctor here in Louisiana, because I was never sick. He told me he would like to see me more often. When I do see him, I am always asking, "What about....?" He keeps assuring me, I will know. I actually didn't know until it was pretty much too late. I really had no business traveling around the country as I did at that time.
So....just be aware of your body. We all need to listen to what it tells us, but live life and don't be too paranoid.