Chad K. Park's Blog

2, February 2012

Cardiac awakening

Filed under: Nutrition — chadkpark @ 11:51 pm

It happened like this.

At the tender age of 39 & 15/16, I had begun receiving hints from my dear wife (DW) that I should get my 40 year check up.  She was right, of course, to insist early on.  If it was me, I’d have delayed until I was about 49.  Or 59.

So, I go to my doc & he’s a good guy.  He’s prescribed me antibiotics over the phone because he knows I can tell when I really need them.  He was real nice when I was convinced that I have a melanoma – based on my self-diagnosis.  He thoroughly examined the freckle on my gut and reassured me it’s not a tumor.  He even told me about how he and the other pre-meds all self-diagnosed themselves with psychiatric disorders while they were studying brain malfunctioning.  So, I’m happy and I get squeezed and prodded and digitally measured for 10 minutes.  Then he goes out to look up in his cheat sheet what all the numbers mean.  I’m in there thinking of what pithy thing I can say to DW, like, ‘see?  I’m fine.’, when he comes back in with a real odd, concerned look on his face staring at my EKG.

That set off a trip to a cardiologist who ordered every test in the book.  I wore a chest monitor for 24 hours.  I was made radioactive with Tc-99.  I was squeezed in an imaging system.  I had to run treadmills while some guy shot my IV with radioactive tracers (and more bubbles than I was comfortable seeing entering my bloodstream).  I had a sonogram of my carotid as an indicator of arterial wall thickness.  Throughout these weeks of testing, I was getting more and more worried.  I wasn’t getting a lot of feedback.  But nothing seemed really alarming to any of the techs.  However, I kept thinking about all the heart problems in my family.  There weren’t a few.  It’s something of an issue.

Anyway, the sonogram guy is one of the last ones and he happily tells me, ‘Ah… there we go, 95th percentile.’  I’m thinking, ‘great! two standard deviations better than normal!’  I mention that to him and he’s like, ‘no…. more like you’re in the top 5% thickest arterial walls for your age group.’

It took me a couple of days to deal with it.  But that slap in the face was my early motivation for making a revolutionary change in my diet.

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1 Comment »

  1. Whoa! That is crazy, and motivation indeed.

    Comment by Tepary — 20, February 2012 @ 3:29 am


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