Blood Clots Are What They Are

I write this blog post from my bed at Mt. Vernon hospital just down the street from my house.

Two days ago I was having dinner at a restaurant with my wife and kids. As the evening progressed a slight ache below my right shoulder blade became excruciatingly painful. I slept in a recliner because my back wouldn’t tolerate lying in bed.

Despite lots of ice and ibuprofen, the pain persisted. So we decided I should go to the emergency room last night. After X-rays showed no anomalies, I had a CT scan with contrasting dye.

I thought I had muscle spasms but boy was I wrong. Both my lungs had blood clots. “All over the place.” My right lung was significantly worse than my left. I also had pneumonia in my right lung despite having had a pneumonia shot a couple of weeks ago.

Next I had an ultrasound exam of my legs. My left leg had a big clot in it.

I was put on blood thinners and admitted to make sure I stayed still until the blood thinners could do their thing.

Not to be dramatic, A clot could break free and cause me to die from cardiac arrest at any time.

Merry Christmas to me.

I am scheduled for an echocardiogram (ultrasound of my heart) and CT scan of my abdomen and pelvis. My right ventricle, which pumps blood into my lungs is probably enlarged. The echocardiogram is to determine whether I need an operation to clear things up. The CT scans will be looking for a tumor which sometimes cause this sort of problem.

Readers of this blog know that I went to the ER about a year and a half ago with chest pains. They were diagnosed as an infection but the doctors now think it may have been caused by clots.

My hypothesis is that my 60+ hours of flying around the world in September 2015 may be the culprit.

I’ve already been seen by five doctors. Doctors love unusual cases.

So long story short, I could have had a heart attack at any time in the last two and a half years.

I attributed my crappy riding at bicycle events this year to age. Looks like age is the least of my problems.

In addition to two days of bed rest, I am pretty much banned from cycling for a few weeks. I am just 88 miles short of 10,000 miles for 2017. Sooo close!

To quote my wife’s oncologist “it is what it is.”


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