Thursday, December 14, 2006

So I finally get a physical

This past year we switched health insurance plans and part of our new package includes yearly physicals. Now we didn't even have a family doctor, we haven't really needed one since we haven't been sick much, more often it's something of an emergency nature due to riding, skiing, etc.. I asked some of my friends for a recommendation and made an appointment for this past Monday.

The first test they did was an EKG, and then I went through some others including a bone scan and the usual blood tests as well as those of a more "intimate" type. The doctor says the EKG is showing some abnormality so he prescribes more tests including a sonogram and also a stress test. Due to all the riding I do I have a low resting heart rate which he says may put me at more risk after I tell him about the possible sleep apnea I have. I say possible because that's what my wife claims when she whacks me in the middle of the night. Maybe it's just an excuse for her though.

I took the stress test this morning which involves a treadmill and nuclear dye along withe some imaging tests. The doctor gave me a piece of paper to carry for about a week in case I cross the border or fly. Apparently the nuclear stuff in my body can set off detectors at these places. I checked and at least I can't be used for a night light.

The treadmill part was kind of fun, they start you off slow and then ramp up the speed and incline every few minutes while they monitor you HR and blood pressure. they want to get you to a certain HR and then you are supposed to tell them when you think you can only last another minute so they can inject more dye. I never got to that point and they have a time limit on the test so they injected more dye anyway. I was working a little by the time it ended, actually running to keep up but not enough to stop. They said for my age that the results were off the chart. Of course the pictures they took will tell the real story.

I also had a consultation with a sleep disorder doctor today and he prescribed a sleep test to check if I have sleep apnea and if so, how severe it might be. I will have to spend a night at a facility hooked up to all sorts of wires and things. I've heard from others that it can be difficult to sleep during these tests. Hopefully I won't have that problem and they can get a good diagnosis.

I'll be updating my blog with the experience and results as they come in. Stay tuned.

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