Empower Your Heart

Modern technology can be an asset as well as a traumatic hinderance in our lives.  Many of you may have opted to view your medical records that include results of blood work, x-rays, CAT Scans, and other medical tests.  Too often these results are viewable prior to any communication with your physician.  So what do we do, we Google the information to become knowledgeable.  However, sometimes that knowledge is frightening and misinterpreted by either your cognitive abilities resulting in an over-anxious thought process.


Well, this all happened to me this week.  Let me explain!  When I was 13 or 14 years old, I was diagnosed with a heart murmur.  Initially, it was a reason for concern (my parent’s). However, my medical team finally confirmed it was a normal heart murmur, whatever that means.  Within a year I was be

ing seen by a specialist at the University of Minnesota, C. Walton Lillehei, he was one of Dr. Christian Barnard’s teachers.  Dr. Lillehei had me scheduled for a heart cath and minutes before I was wheeled into surgery, he canceled the procedure.  He told my parents to take me home, and live a normal life.  He suggested weight and stress reduction, although I was not overweight at the time.  We will not talk about stress.



As the years passed, I experienced twinges of pain always to be diagnosed as something unrelated such as migraine, fibromyalgia, endometriosis, and a variety of maladies that could contribute to heart issues but most likely were benign.  Approximately twenty years ago I was rediagnosed with mitral valve prolapse but was once again to note it and ignore it.  (What the hell do I do with that information?)


Last year, my current cardiologist informed me that I do have an enlarged heart but tests again were benign, and he suggested a retest this year.  I had the Scan in February and weeks after I got a call that I had no change and it was advised to scan again in one year.  Yesterday, MY UH Health Chart popped up with a message…” Dr. wanted us to let you know that your aortic aneurysm is Stable. He would like to repeat CT of the chest in one year.”


AORTIC ANEURYSM, what the Hell?  No one ever mentioned this in the past.  When, How, Why and What Now.  Well, I hope to know more tomorrow, my proactive mind and body told me to make an appointment with my doctor and discuss treatments and prevention from stable to unstable.  My maternal grandmother died from a stroke and my mother died from complications from a stroke, and my paternal grandmother, aunt, uncle, and my dad all had cardiac issues.


Life is full of surprises however, we must make every attempt to reduce the medical issues we can control.  I am once again am reviewing the dietary plan that I allowed to go haywire over the winter and increase my exercise program although it should not be strenuous.  I plan on living life to the fullest in the healthiest way I can!  I AM EMPOWERED!  B U B ME.

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