Yesterday I had to return to the QE hospital for a 3 monthly health check to make sure I'm still fit for transplant.
I knew one of the tests done would be the 6 minute walk test and I was feeling confident a record distance was a possibility.
The Doctor attached the oxymetre to my finger and the nurse zero'd the distance measuring device, I took my oxygen pack off as I always do my test without any assistance and off we went. The QE has some very long corridors which are ideal for straight walking but there was a lot of traffic today. People were everywhere but nothing was going to deny me today of a record new distance. I wanted to show my transplant consultant that his advice telling me to lose weight had been heeded and I wanted to give him some positive feedback with evidence to back it up.
As usual I started puffing quite heavy at around the 3 minute mark and the doctor asked me if I was ok, I gave him a nod and kept pushing hard, my calf muscles were beginning to burn and tighten a little but I was able to maintain an even pace right up until the 6 minutes were up.
I looked up at the nurse and she said well done 480 metres, I then turned to the Doc and asked what my oxygen levels dropped too, 74% he replied which came as no surprise as I, as usual held nothing back.
Well that's it, 3 months earlier I could only manage 408 metres and now I'm doing 480 metres so there is no doubt now that losing almost 2 stone has improved my condition considerably. My recovery time was much quicker than previous attempts too and I was soon able to talk normally without struggling for breath.
When my consultant was presented with this evidence he was quite pleased to see that I had listened and acted upon his sound advice. I got the feeling that not many do. He did say though that weight loss doesn't always help the breathing in all patients.
If you are a little overweight as I was, and your contemplating trying to lose some of it then I can only tell you of my experience, Its well worth it because you not only feel better, you are better!!
After my positive experience my thoughts then turned to wendells and her husband Harry who at the same time were going through a pretty rough day over in Austrialia.
I hope all is still going in the right direction for them as I think they deserve some better luck. Tony. Keep breathing easy all you huffers and puffers out there