Fifty Plus (50+) - Anxiety or heart trouble?
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09-19-07, 08:37 PM
Got to do a little partying at the ER on Monday. Started to have some pressure in my chest and feeling really bad. Well this happened 5 or 6 times in the last several years and I went to the ER it was the same thing. No heart attack. I've had several treadmill tests and the nuclear heart scan all negative no blockages . Well to make a long story short. I gotta go have the heart scan again. I haven't been real good about taking my anxiety meds. Supposed to take it twice daily and I usually take one or I might even skip a couple of days if I'm feeling really good. I don't like to take the meds I guess cause I fear I might get addicted to them. Well I'm gonna take em like I'm supposed to from now on and after I get over this test next week I'll ask my family doctor about changing my med to something else. I did the prozac and felt like a zombie I'm taking clonazpan and it doesn't make me sleepy and lethargic like the prozac did. Hopefully I'll near break the treadmill like I did the last time a year and a half ago. Job has been really hectic lately I'm a troubleshoot and tryout person for a section in a metal forming operation running large and smaller forming presses and leaned out to the point I have little or no back up to fill in so its like I'm the repair guy and scheduler and the Shell answer man all in one. So I'm gonna slow down a bit, it will still be there tomorrow and if this keeps up I may not. I commute to work on my bike and that helps me to decompress but it hard to let it go sometimes. I can only imagine what some of these middle and upper manager types have to deal with. I'm glad I'm a factory bum
How long ago did you have your last heart tests? Things change, you know. Better have all the tests you can get, just to be on the safe side.
I think someone who is on/off with the anti-depressants like you are, can get some weird effects.
My wife has panic attacks that mimic heart attacks, at least to the layman. She's been tested a few times and has always come up negative.
cranky old dude
09-20-07, 12:03 AM
Do get all the tests needed to verify the condition of your heart.
In the meantime, try to take some comfort in the knowledge that
stress can and does do strange things to one's body. Our Plant has been
downsizing a lot too, and throughout my late thirties and early forties
I had several rides to the Emergency Room via an ambulance for treatment
of Heart Attack symptoms....all false alarms. I've since learned that if
the Plant Managers want to cut the workforce so dramatically that we
don't have sufficient labor to meet the workload then that's their
worry. I taught myself to become disengaged from the worries of the
job. It may not be proper, it may not be American, but guess what?
I do not suffer any Chest Pain or pains shooting down my left arm at
all anymore, and I don't ride nearly as much as I did back then and I
weigh a lot more too.
So get those tests and then charge into the rest of your life confident
of your health, and continue to disengage yourself from the uncontrollable
facets of the workplace.
Good luck and Happy Trails
09-20-07, 04:44 AM
Hey String'. I didn't "write the book" on the anxiety/depression thing, but I DID edit a coupla' major chapters. BTW, anxiety is physiologically the same as depression. . .as in "killer".
You mentioned. . .
>>>I haven't been real good about taking my anxiety meds. Supposed to take it twice daily and I usually take one or I might even skip a couple of days if I'm feeling really good.
Dude. . .this ain't heartburn. Taking the meds only when you have symptoms is a formula for failure. Do what you like here, but don't think this is trivial stuff you'll walk away from without serious action. What's "serious action"? It's easy. . .as in the hardest thing you'll ever do. Get serious about the meds and look for ways to reduce the stressors. Regarding the "stressors", remember Colin Fletcher's "Testicular Imperative". . .it goes "Either you got the World's in your fist or the World has yours.". Go out and take control of this thing or expect to be dominated by it.
Personal note: I once had active tuberculosis and am missing a couple tablespoons of lung. For the record, you haven't lived 'til you're denied breath. Later I had a world class anxiety/depression. . .as in planning suicide. Given a choice, give me the TB!!
Sometimes those pills have those kind of side effects. Something a little more milder would be Hydroxyzine, with less side effects.
09-20-07, 07:53 AM
You're not alone in this. Stress is a killer. I've had some of those suicidal thoughts, been a hardcore alcoholic, bleeding ulcer, the whole bit. One time, at the doctor for chest pain, he told me my heart was fine and to go ride my bike. Just hearing that from him made me feel better. Nothing de-stresses me like a long ride with friends. Friends are great for this stress stuff, too.
I know, it's easy for me to say this stuff over the 'net, and I have no idea how tough your life is, but I think the people here will support you and be your friends. Good luck, and have some good fun.
09-20-07, 09:19 AM
Do you drink coffee? If you do, stop.
Ride your bike and then ride it some more. I, too, have anxiety and depression. Yep, attacks can crush our chests even making it hard to breathe. When it passes and if you're not too spent -- ride your bike and then ride it some more. My prayers are with you. Breathe deep from way down low. Oh yeah, and ride your bike.
09-20-07, 09:51 AM
No caffeine gave it up a long time ago along with the cigs and alchohol. Like I said I eat well try to get enough rest and other than being a really super type A personality I'm good its just that this stuff catches up with me and sets me off. I had the heart scan thing about 2 years ago and the results were that I had the heart of a 25 year old so that makes me what 27 now (ha ha) I'm not gonna get into a tizzy about this but after one of these bouts I feel like I've been drug through 40 miles of 6 inch sewer pipe. I'm feeling a lot better today and will probably do my commute tomorrow. Thanks for the support. I know I have a powerful savior that will help if I just let him and try not to do this in my own will. Let the doctors do their thing and rely on them and the Lords healing. Not trying to be preachy but thats what my walk with the Lord tells me to do. In my own flesh I forget to let Him take the worry and not do the things He has told me to do. I think God has a sense of humor and I bet he rides a Schwinn
09-20-07, 12:14 PM
LOL, a Schwinn, huh?
It sounds like "Turn it Over" is working for you...:)
09-20-07, 12:31 PM
Sounds like you are on the right path, for sure. Keep close tabs on your heart.
Six years ago my first symptom of a heart problem was sudden cardiac arrest.
Fortunately I was in the hospital ER at the time, that was a miracle. My heart restarted
when shocked, I had emergency open heart surgery, no heart damage and now I am in super
physical condition with a resting heart rate of high 30's. I get a stress test every year,
take an aspirin and a low dose of Crestor daily. The rest is in God's hands.
09-20-07, 01:11 PM
"I haven't been real good about taking my anxiety meds. Supposed to take it twice daily and I usually take one or I might even skip a couple of days if I'm feeling really good. "
Whatever meds you wind up with, you better check with doc/pharmacist/online. It's my understanding anxiety meds require a number of days to have an affect. You skip doses and you reset body back to day one. Wife has similar problems, meds are useless as she skips taking them so much. Just remember, every day you wake up is a great day.
09-20-07, 01:28 PM
I know prozac has a half life of about 30 days which is the time it takes to get out of and into full effect, the stuff I take is a quicker acting med and I can feel it take effect in about 30 minutes. I've been dealing with this stuff for about 6 or 7 years now so I know what I need to do. Its just that I don't really like being dependent on something that may or may not be habit forming, and if I do get a change of meds I will have to wean off one before I start the other. Thanks for all the good info and concern
09-20-07, 03:17 PM
I had a world class anxiety/depression. . .as in planning suicide.
I'm glad you did not do it and instead share your Coyote wiley ways with us now and again.
Two summers ago I thought I was in major trouble. All the symptoms of a minor heart attack. Heart rythm, blood pressure, etc., all went west. One doctor was inches away from calling an ambulance while I was sitting on his table.
Then he had an idea. What if it was Lyme Disease? I live in the Lyme Capital of the nation. Sure enough, he nailed it. Within a week of being on heavy duty antibiotics, I looked and felt like a new man. They followed up with a stress test, etc., and all was well after that. Had it gone untreated, I might not have been so lucky.
Get a check-up, take your meds, and read this book (http://www.amazon.com/Feeling-Good-Handbook-Plume/dp/0452281326/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2/002-3511983-4106458?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1190341443&sr=8-2). (Dumb title, great book.) The premise is that the dialog running in your brain drives how you feel. I still feel anxious at times, but now know that evil little voices in my mind are causing my reactions. The anxious feelings decrease as soon as I realize what's causing them. That inner dialog can be nasty! It's depression when those voices are tormenting me about the past, and anxiety when they torment me about the future.
Hope you are feeling better soon. Funny thing I read about depression: "Depression is anger without enthusiasm." :)
09-20-07, 08:44 PM
Well its kinda funny but I am generally a very happy person,but I do have a quick trigger and tend to internalize things and when they build up thats when I get the old anxiety attacks, been to therapists and know what to do but don't always do it ( did I say I'm stubborn too) :( I really don't like conflict but when it happens I let go with all guns blazing and thats not good but I am better than I used to be and find that having a spouse that is the exact opposite of me really helps, she is easy going but not a doormat so its not like I can be a turd to her and she won't call me on it but she doesn't do it in an accusatory manner but constructively and can turn me around in a flash. Having the bikes to work on and ride really does help and at my age I guess I need to learn to let it go and relax. If I was a drinking man I'd go have a beer but instead I'll have a cup of decafe and grab my guitar and play for a while (after I ride a few miles that is)
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