Saturday, November 16, 2013

Fireams deer season is already memorable

This is the first firearms season opener I've missed. Some of them have given me the chance to hunt but most of the others involve meeting hunters, conducting interviews and taking pictures.
This year I spent most of the day and a good part of the evening in the cath lab at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Pontiac.
In a way I was to blame for being there. Even since I had a stent placed ten years ago, I've been up front and very honest with my cardiologist Randall Reher, M.D.
While we were visiting in Germany and walking around some of he little rounds I noticed I was getting dizzy, my heart was pounding and I was breathing deep. A check with a doctor over there revealed nothing.
Back home I made an appoint with Reher. He began scheduling all sorts of tests; chest x-ray, stress test, echo cardiogram, and keg. These all came bak within normal limits.
The next step was a walking treadmill test. I'll pause here and tell you I dread this test. I used to run long distance-usually 6-8-10 miles daily-but since both knees have been replaced running is not an option.
In my running days I would try to burn the rubber off a treadmill thinking I could take it to the very end. I never did but I gave it a good try in theses days.
"We need yo try and duplicate your symptoms on the treadmill," Reher said. Coincidentally, he was present when I had my test.
"I'm going to order a stress test for you. Despite no indication, my gut tells me there is something wrong. Lets check it out and be sure," he sad.
When I got done I was really breathing hard. Reher felt this was an indication of a possible blockage. A few days later I saw him in his office. "Everything is clear. None of your tests show any blockage," he said.
The next and hopefully final step in the process was an angioplasty. This involves inserting a catheter in your wrist and on into the heart. Or they can go in through the groin.
Once everything is set they inject dye to see if all the vessels, arteries and parts of the heart are carrying it through.
Again, mine checked out ok with the exception that one small area of the heart did not appear as strong as the rest.
I'm on some new medication which should improve that condition and overall make me feel better. Even though things turned out well, I still found myself thinking about the opener, and who was bringing deer into the Holly check station. Most of all I missed talking with wildlife biologist Tom Payne along with Julie Oaks and Jon Curtis. Maybe next year.

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