Heart and Stroke Foundation. This made me laugh and tear up just a wee bit at the same time. I'm thinking "I had a what now?" and "why do they look so happy?" and "I had a what now?" and "open brochure and read it girl". And my handy dandy mantra to calm me down "breathe..."
And without further ado, here's all the medical jargony details of what my head has been through lately, summarized to the best of my ability from the notes I took during my appointment.
First of all, my aneurysms are fusiform, and these rarely rupture so surgery is not usually ever needed. Great! So happy they are not saccular which have a bigger risk of rupturing and definetly require treatment.
He said there is likely no chance of my aneurysms ever bursting, though when I pressed him on what could happen if they did (since it is possible), he said it would be paralysis or some other scary outcome, as they are at the base of my brain where it joins the spinal cord (below the skull cap). But they are the kind of thing you can be born with and live a long and healthy life with, so I just told him I'm gonna hold him to that "there is no worry of them rupturing" and now you all know where to find him if he's wrong. ;P
|Try relaxing while waiting 30 min|
next to a poster like this. Ischemic.
Add in my potential for blood clotting and an irregular heart rate and we have the perfect storm which led to a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA). Otherwise known as a mini-stroke.
Yay! More freakin acronyms for me to try to remember and learn all about. Joy.
|Keep calm and carry on. Ha!|
This is serious business and a sign it was time for me to make changes in my life to reduce stress, and I'm glad that I already have. I'm on track to avoiding a genuine brain attack. It's scary to read all this stuff warning me I'm in danger of another stroke (still in shock I had the first one and thankful it was a mini), but reassuring because it is all about lowering my risk of that ever happening again. Who needs roller coasters when your brain gives you this up and down loop-dy-loop existence?
So now what? Dr. B has prescribed another calcium channel blocker that should prevent the headaches from starting, since it's obvious the pain relievers don't work to stop pain once it starts, as well as aid in reducing my blood pressure. ahhhh. Great idea! Within a month I should notice a difference and be back to the migraines, and other headaches I'm used to living with.
The follow ups in my future are with my family doc at the end of June, Dr. B in 3 months and a visit with Dr. G and an MRI screening next spring. Other appointments as needed.
I am already working on my list of new questions to ask the docs when I see them next, so if any of this has questions popping up for you, please feel free to share them with me and I will add them to my list.
Should I experience any bad symptoms such as weakness in limbs, trouble speaking, vision problems, any new head pains I can't identify or another explosive pain and/or dizziness, I need to head straight to ER to have checked out. This is a good choice for everyone actually. If any of you experience a sudden onset of these symptoms you should probably get yourself to the ER too...you could be having a stroke! Better to be safe than sorry.
Another tip of the hat to our public health care system (a big reason we are not destitude from medical bills!) and a moment to draw your attention to the Canadian Health Coalition campaign to #Stand4Medicare and implement a new health accord for Canada. Did you know the federal health accord expired and negotiations between the federal and provincial governments have stalled? Visit healthcoalition.ca to learn more, sign petition, and find other ways to take action to stand up for our national health care system today!
Now that I am deeply aware of the severity of my blood pressure and risk for full on stroke, I'm gonna turn those odds around! Time for a cleanse and continued focus on health. Keep on keeping on with that deep breathing, relaxing, having fun, and enjoying life stuff. Hugs a plenty! :D