Sudden Cardiac Arrest
488 members31 posts

My SCA experience, so far

I'm 62. Dec 2013 I was undergoing some physical therapy for muscle tightness. Earlier that morning I was experiencing some chest pain that didn't seem to let up. When I arrived for my physical therapy appointment that day I told the Nurse Practitioner that I just wasn't feeling all that well that day and that I had been experiencing some chest pains. She immediately told me I needed to go to the ER to get it checked out. I was very reluctant to do so as I had quite a busy schedule that day and knew this would take more time than I wanted to spend. She was relentless and I agreed and went to the ER. Upon telling them I had been experiencing chest pains they had me with a doctor within 30 seconds of my arrival. They did a few preliminary things, gave me a nitroglycerin tablet, and in the process of them starting an IV I apparently passed out and went into cardiac arrest. My heart stopped. They immediately started CPR and got me revived within a few minutes. Apparently I also had two seizures related to the cardiac arrest, during this process. My vital signs came back surprisingly rapid to close to normal, not at all what the doctors were expecting. They did many heart related tests including an angiogram which all showed my heart to be in better condition than it was 12 years prior when I had a similar event. No blockages whatsoever. They discovered that my heart had no automatic lower limit when I pass out or am under severe stress. They put in a pacemaker to prevent my heart from dropping below 45 beats per minute in the future. What I learned is that my life's priorities were a bit messed up. And that I am very lucky to have survived this. Especially a second time in 12 years. All due to way too much stress. If you know anyone who operates like I do have them read this before they are dead. They may not be as lucky as I have been. I was more concerned about my next business appointment than my own health. I am in the process of changing my priorities, office hours and realize that if I don't put myself first no one else can or will. Luckily for me I am unable to work more than about 3-4 hours per day at this point so I can't push it beyond that at this point. I used to just push through periods of fatigue or whatever to get things done. Now I can't even do that, when I try. So I'm forced to change how I work much to my and my family's benefit. Please take care of yourselves. Best wishes to all of you.