Posted by Shannon Rowland on 7/13
I am a 37 year old female, slightly underweight, and experienced very similar issues last year. I was weak, numbness in my left arm, chest pain, palpitations, short of breath and very dizzy. My PCM was a PA and didn't believe me because my EKG and blood work was fine. The ER (military dependent over here) put in a referral for a 3 day holter monitor, that showed nothing as well. I had a very good relationship with my PCM before this started. Well, that just ticked my PCM off and everything was a fight for care from there. She insisted nothing was wrong and I had to be making it up. My husband called 911 when I was having such severe chest pain I was in tears. The ER almost kept me overnight because my heart rate was down to 43 for over 3 hours, then finally came up to 60 so they discharged me. I argued with my PCM to have an echocardiogram. Finally she agreed, then called me apologizing because it showed a mass in my left atrium. She didn't see a reason to send me to a cardiologist however because the report was read by one and they would tell her if I needed to see one. So I was told to just take it easy and bed rest. Not a joke people, bed rest for this. Back in the ER the next day, as it was getting worse, they saw my results from the echo and asked who my cardiologist was. My husband was with me through all of this and was there when my doc told me no driving as well. He explained to the ER doc, who happened to be the head of the ER, what my doc said. 5 minutes later I had an appointment with the head of cardiology at 7:30 the next morning. Within 2 months, the mass was gone. No reasoning why, but an MRI with contrast was done at Duke and it was just gone. Still weak, dizzy and palpitations, I was put on meds for palpitations and all has been well.
Don't back down. You know your body better than anyone else. Luckily my mass wasn't cancer, I didn't need open heart surgery, all of the things it looked like it was. They can only assume it was a cyst that deflated on it's own. But, I knew something wasn't right. Best of luck to all of you. Remember, an EKG, blood work, chest X-rays, stress tests, they don't show everything and can come back completely normal when in fact there is a cause of this. I am a prime example. And yes, I did change my PCM to someone who believes that the patient knows something about themselves.