Last week I had the first set of testing suggested by my consultant, and I wanted to document it, mainly because I had no idea what to expect for either of the tests, and I want to reassure anyone who may be reading. I am absolutely not a medical expert, these are just my experiences.
This is an ultrasound of your heart, which for me took about 25 minutes to do. I was laid on my side used some (very cold) goo stuff and a probe to look at my heart. Some bits were a little bit tender where she pressed quite hard, but it was nothing more than a bit uncomfortable. I could also hear my heart beat at certain points which was a little bit weird, but I didn’t look at the screen. Overall, it was definitely nothing to worry about.
My doctors are pretty amazing too, and upload all your test results to an online portal, so I already know that the scan showed that my heart is structurally normal, which is a big relief.
24h ECG/holter monitor
This is similar to a normal ECG that you have done in hospital, except obviously a lot smaller and with less wires. I had 3 wires connected to my chest, and was given a little monitor (about the size of a digital camera case) to carry. Other than being a bit itchy, the wires were fine, and once you get used to the monitor you forget it’s there. The only thing I had an issue with is that 2 of the wires were very high up and above my neckline, so I had to wear scarves to hide it, which I wasn’t expecting, but if you have a high-necked top it’d be fine. I also wasn’t allowed to shower with the machine, but if you prepare ahead that’s not an issue. Sleep-wise, it took me a while to settle because I was worried I’d tie myself in knots when I was sleeping, but once I drifted off it was fine, and I assume nothing terrible happened while I was sleeping.
I was also given a diary sheet to record whenever I felt any relevant symptoms, along with what activity I was doing at the time. I tried to spend the day doing things that would bring on symptoms, to make sure they actually had something to look at, and ended up filling the diary sheet about 4x over, but I’m sure that wasn’t a problem! I then had to return the next morning to give the monitor back, the worst bit of the whole thing was probably pulling the tapes holding the wires off. Imagine a very very sticky plaster! But again, overall, nothing to worry about.
My next test is my tilt-table, in the middle of next month, which I am absolutely dreading, but fingers crossed this all leads to some kind of answers and support.