TLDR – I am spending a weekend in the cardiac ward of Saint Vincents Hospital in Dublin. I might or might not have had a heartattack riding a bike with Khaleesi on the back.
A student in Khaleesi’s class had a positive COVID test, resulting in her class being disbanded for a bit. HSE required all class members to be tested before her class could resume. They offered us a test on Saturday an hour’s drive away in Wicklow. We have no car, that is not going to work. Michelle called in and booked us a Friday appointment 20 minutes bike ride away at Clonskeagh medical center. Same place I had my negative test months ago.
It’s about 8km all downhill with about 130 meters decline. We made it no problem. Khaleesi was not a fan of the nasal probing up each nostril but she powered through it. We saw a few of her friends at the testing center before we left. Seems half the class rescheduled. About 10 minutes into the ride my chest/lungs started to burn a bit like I was having a good workout. It’s been a while since I rode this hard. At first, I enjoyed the pain feeling like I was having a nice workout.
About 20 minutes into the ride my chest/lungs started to burn more. I started to think it might be a good idea to take a rest. As I was thinking this we passed a new playground we’ve never seen before near the beacon; Perfect place to rest. We stopped at the playground. Khaleesi went and played while I tried to sit and recover. Sitting quickly became laying on the ground as I was getting dizzy and my arms both started to tingle and go numb. At this point, I started to get some tunnel vision and figured something was really wrong
I was laying on the ground and could not move my arms anymore. Arms were tingling moe and more and I was continuing to feel more lightheaded. Felt a bit like I gave blood without eating the day before. I called Khaleesi over asking her to get me help and she just froze. She started to cry a bit looking me in the eyes conveying helplessness and fear like you never want to see in a child. I asked her again to go get one of the adults in the park for help and she couldn’t do it.
I eventually yelled loud enough two women from Romania came to help me. Not an exciting feeling laying on the ground in need of help having to yell for it. They did not speak much English. I speak no Romanian. One of the gals called her husband who came to the park and called an ambulance. I was in the waiting queue for an ambulance for 50 minutes until Tim came for me.
Michelle had contacted Tim to come to get my bike and Khaleesi. Tim volunteered to be my ambulance and drive me to Saint Vincent’s Emergency. His wife said we don’t want to go to the Beacon that we can see from where I am laying because they are a private hospital, and who knows if it is covered by our insurance. It’s good to know people who know things and are willing to help. We found the emergency entrance where Tim left me on my own at the check-in desk.
Made it to the hospital
I said I had chest pains as I was being checked in. Before I’d left the check-in chair a nurse called me to the emergency and started taking measurements and information before moving me to a room. By now it’s been about 2 hours from whatever happened and I’m at about 80% back to normal. Still dull pain in my chest and tingly arms but nothing that has me scared. Next, a nurse comes in to give me an IV and takes some blood. Shortly after the pokes, I’m off to have a chest X-ray
More time passes and a doctor comes in to do a full workup on me. He says the chest X-ray looks fine. He is still waiting on blood work but gives me aspirin for a blood thinner just to be sure. About an hour later he came back and said the Blood test for troponin came back Indicating I might have some heart issues. — Normal is about .04. I was at .41. That’s a bit scary. Was not expecting to come back positive after our last conversation. ER doctor booked me a visit from a cardiologist
Waiting for the cardiologist they moved me to another room as the room I was in is going to be used for COVID patients. From eavesdropping, it sounds like they are overflow COVID from another hospital and will be taking cases tonight. My new room has a nice view of the nurse’s desk. The phone is at about 20% and dropping and I’ve no charger. My main concern is finding a charger, I know priorities. but being able to talk to Michelle and Wes has great value to me. I asked a few nurses and was not finding a charger
A few hours later the cardiologist comes in and says he wants to keep me over the weekend for observation and do an angiogram on Monday. I guess they do not do these procedures over the weekend so I get to stay for 3 nights vs doing it now. Going to be a long long weekend.
Another hour later and they move to the cardio care unit. I’m in a more comfy bed In a shared room with seven other beds. A few of them occupied. More blood and paperwork found a charger. By about 2200 I’m mostly sleeping. As best as you can sleep with a BP cuff going off a few times an hour and loads of wires. – and that kids is how I ended up in the hospital for a weekend.