Matters of my Heart

As I mentioned last time I posted, my doctor wrote a prescription for a statin drug because my cholesterol was too high. Even though I told him I wanted to see what a calcium scan first.

Turns out, they did something a bit more involved. Not at this place, but it’s the same basic procedure. If they’re gonna take a look at my heart for calcium, why not check the valves while they’re at it?

I was definitely a bit more nervous about it than I should have been. The contrast being injected into my bloodstream was a weird feeling for sure. Unfortunately, I also learned first-hand why they tell you not to eat beforehand. Very glad I hadn’t eaten since the day before.

While I’m still waiting for my doctor to tell me what my actual calcium score is, they did say “no heart disease.” But, they also said my aorta was dilated — another word for “bigger than it should be.” Considering they delivered this message over MyChart versus, say, a phone call, I came to the conclusion that this wasn’t urgent, but something that will require monitoring.

While I haven’t talked to my doctor or the vascular surgeon the doctor referred me to, I consulted Doctor Google, which turns up works like aneurysm if things get worse. An aorta bursting inside of you would be a bad experience.

I suspect this is part of the overall damage that has occurred due to past lifestyle choices. My current ones have allowed be to drop my A1C to non-diabetic levels and more than 100 pounds. Unfortunately, my blood pressure is still a bit elevated. Given that I quit taking meds for this several months ago, I suspect it will come up in the conversation with my doctor again.

It’s possible I will end up taking meds for this in the end, but I’d rather understand the root cause of this rather than simply medicate symptoms. More research is definitely required.