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Nuclear treadmill test...OUCH!

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Nuclear treadmill test...OUCH!

Old 10-14-13, 01:24 PM
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eja_ bottecchia
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Nuclear treadmill test...OUCH!

The thread about dreading an upcoming treadmill stress test prompted me to write this.

I am what most would consider a serious, recreational rider. I am not a "racer-boy" and I am certainly not a fast climber (just ask TrojanHorse). I do enjoy weekly unsupported long distance rides (metric centuries plus) and I enjoy climbing the hills near my home in SoCal. Like I wrote, I am not the fastest rider out there but I am certainly a consistent rider and climber. Until just recently.

The last couple of months I began experiencing some mild chest pain, right smack in the middle of my chest, (over the sternum) when I climb. The pain goes away as soon as the hills flatten--but it is there at the start, something I had never experienced before. In a couple of recent climbs my HRM alarm beeped when I exceeded 165 bpm. That had never happened to me before.

At first, I did not pay much attention to the pain. After all, we all ride through occasional pain. Rule #5 has always been my riding mantra. But other "signs" have been cropping up that have caused me to be concerned. For example, yesterday I rode 42.5 miles at an 17.4 mph pace--mostly flat course with no wind. By the time I hit mile 40 I was almost too tired to finish; it took a bit of effort just to finish the last 2.5 miles. The worst part of it was watching riders in my group, riders that I normally leave behind, riding past me and leaving me behind. Argggg.

I am 57 years old and have diabetes and asthma. When I saw my asthma doctor for my regular check-up I told him about the chest pains. He immediately called a cardiologist and made an appointment for me--right on the spot.

I saw the cardiologist on Friday and he took an EKG, which is pretty much unless in my situation except to show that the electrical signals from my heart are OK. Tthe doctor then ordered a nuclear treadmill test. The test is set for November 1. The doctor told me that it is OK for me to keep riding, just avoid exerting myself--no more climbing hills until the test results are in.

Just the word nuclear, attached to the word test, is pretty scary. But that is not what has me worried.

According to the Heart Association and the ADA, heart disease (including heart attacks and strokes) are the leading cause of death for diabetics (and right up there for asthmatics as well). That has me very concerned.

Now I ride with an eye on my Garmin computer. The moment my heart rate reaches 80 to 85 percent of my max, I ease up on the pedals. I really hate riding like this...I have always prided myself on pushing myself hard and riding to the limit of my physical abilities.

I am not sure why I am posting this, except maybe to vent a little and rail against he unfairness of certain diseases that leave you looking good (well, relatively good for me) on the outside while destroying you, bit by bit, from the inside.

I trust that God has a plan for me and that there is a reason for this. I just wish that He would sometime take time from His schedule and clue me in on what His plan is. It would make it a lot easier to accept some things.

I will let you all know how the November 1 test comes out...
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Old 10-14-13, 01:34 PM
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Good luck Ill say a prayer for you.

Charlie
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Old 10-14-13, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Ursa Minor View Post
Good luck Ill say a prayer for you.

Charlie

+1

Did you ask him about a CT scan too? That's next for me.
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Old 10-14-13, 01:47 PM
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There is an imaging test done after the radioactive fluid is injected into my body and then another imaging test done after the exercise portion of the test. That will show any areas of blockage and/or muscle damage.

Here is a video of what the test consists of:

https://www.cardiosmart.org/News-and-Events/2013/01/Video-Stress-Nuclear-Study
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Old 10-14-13, 01:53 PM
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Sounds good!
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Old 10-14-13, 02:20 PM
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Nuclear treadmill?
I remember, no room for treadmills on Nuclear Submarines, maybe just the Nuke Powered Aircraft Carrier.
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Old 10-14-13, 02:29 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Nuclear treadmill?
I remember, no room for treadmills on Nuclear Submarines, maybe just the Nuke Powered Aircraft Carrier.
Funny man...
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Old 10-14-13, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Nuclear treadmill?
I remember, no room for treadmills on Nuclear Submarines, maybe just the Nuke Powered Aircraft Carrier.
We had a cheapo exercycle between some of the missile silos on my boomer.
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Old 10-14-13, 02:49 PM
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That was my Bedroom .. forward Port side. ..
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Old 10-14-13, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
That was my Bedroom .. forward Port side. ..
Oh, a private suite .

Sorry we nuked eja_B's thread here.
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Old 10-14-13, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
The last couple of months I began experiencing some mild chest pain, right smack in the middle of my chest, (over the sternum) when I climb. The pain goes away as soon as the hills flatten--but it is there at the start, something I had never experienced before. In a couple of recent climbs my HRM alarm beeped when I exceeded 165 bpm. That had never happened to me before.
Do truly be very careful. This is exactly what was happening to me in the three weeks leading up to my ride in the little red bus to see the man with the femoral roto-rooter. Was it a burning sensation? The classic symptoms often include radial pain into the arm,and neck, but not always. I honestly thought it was the Carne Asada taco I had mid ride. Fortunately I was spotted puking by the side of the road by a flight instructor at the local airport I was riding around. I told him I was fine, that it was something I ate. Lucky for me, he had first aid training and recognized what was happening better than I did.

I had heard that your risk goes up after eating a fatty meal. The doctors I have spoken to dismiss this as unproven. Still, I err on the side of caution and never eat meals high in saturated fat.

I now ride with three stents, a "cocktail" of statins, beta blockers, blood thiners and ace inhibitors. I have also gotten serious with diet, and now am on reduced statins. Unfortunately, due to the stents, the blood thinners are for life. Still, I was extremely lucky in that I have 95% cardio function.

Bottom line. If the feeling comes on you, and doesn't go away when you stop pedaling, hit the 911 right away. Time is tissue!

Last edited by CommuteCommando; 10-14-13 at 03:46 PM.
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Old 10-14-13, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
Oh, a private suite .

Sorry we nuked eja_B's thread here.
The man's dying, and all you can do is jest! Have you no shame? No tact?

He should just be glad he doesn't get the radioactive fluid up the stern torpedo tube.

I hope all goes well for you eja. Think of the cardiologists and tests as a luxury most of the world does without. They just suffer in silence until they fall over one day.
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Old 10-14-13, 03:51 PM
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Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
We had a cheapo exercycle between some of the missile silos on my boomer.
Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
That was my Bedroom .. forward Port side. ..
Bubble Heads!
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Old 10-14-13, 03:57 PM
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now with The Events at Fukushima and the current flowing around the north Pacific, Now.
I'd like another film badge and dosimeter monitoring on the West Coast.
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Old 10-14-13, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by skilsaw View Post
I hope all goes well for you eja. Think of the cardiologists and tests as a luxury most of the world does without. They just suffer in silence until they fall over one day.
Well one bit of good news is that ionizing radiation is less damaging to old guys.
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Old 10-14-13, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by skilsaw View Post
The man's dying, and all you can do is jest! Have you no shame? No tact?

He should just be glad he doesn't get the radioactive fluid up the stern torpedo tube.

I hope all goes well for you eja. Think of the cardiologists and tests as a luxury most of the world does without. They just suffer in silence until they fall over one day.
You are right about the access to medical care and all the testing options. One problem, however, my insurance carrier has yet to approve the procedure. Given my history of diabetes the cardio thinks it will be approved.

I do enjoy the humor here. It helps me laugh at what could be a potentially dangerous situation.

So keep it coming...por favor.
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Old 10-14-13, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
Well one bit of good news is that ionizing radiation is less damaging to old guys.
Who are you calling old?
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Old 10-14-13, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by CommuteCommando View Post
Do truly be very careful. This is exactly what was happening to me in the three weeks leading up to my ride in the little red bus to see the man with the femoral roto-rooter. Was it a burning sensation? The classic symptoms often include radial pain into the arm,and neck, but not always. I honestly thought it was the Carne Asada taco I had mid ride. Fortunately I was spotted puking by the side of the road by a flight instructor at the local airport I was riding around. I told him I was fine, that it was something I ate. Lucky for me, he had first aid training and recognized what was happening better than I did.

I had heard that your risk goes up after eating a fatty meal. The doctors I have spoken to dismiss this as unproven. Still, I err on the side of caution and never eat meals high in saturated fat.

I now ride with three stents, a "cocktail" of statins, beta blockers, blood thiners and ace inhibitors. I have also gotten serious with diet, and now am on reduced statins. Unfortunately, due to the stents, the blood thinners are for life. Still, I was extremely lucky in that I have 95% cardio function.

Bottom line. If the feeling comes on you, and doesn't go away when you stop pedaling, hit the 911 right away. Time is tissue!
But Carne Asada IS Mexican health food.

You are right, this is something to be careful with.

I have noticed that the length and intensity of my rides has decreased from a high of 950 miles in June, to barely 250 miles so far this month. Also the length of the rides has decreased, so there is definitely something there.

Oh well...if for some reason I can't ride, my bikes will make for nice wall art.
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Old 10-14-13, 06:07 PM
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Well one bit of good news is that ionizing radiation is less damaging to old guys.
only in that that we wont be around much longer anyhow, so any slow growing malignancy wont have too much longer to use the host.
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Old 10-14-13, 06:25 PM
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articulate the anxieties you're having about the wait and ask your cardio if he can get you in sooner for the test.

Failing that, it's probably wise to take it a bit easier until after you get the results from the stress test. I'm assuming he's going to use a treadmill rather than chemically stress you since you're in good shape. During the test they'll inject contrast and take images of your heart at various stages.

If you do end up with a positive stress test loads of terrific treatment options out there today. Some of the best developments for Angina/coronary artery disease treatment have come along in the last ten years.


Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
The thread about dreading an upcoming treadmill stress test prompted me to write this.

I am what most would consider a serious, recreational rider. I am not a "racer-boy" and I am certainly not a fast climber (just ask TrojanHorse). I do enjoy weekly unsupported long distance rides (metric centuries plus) and I enjoy climbing the hills near my home in SoCal. Like I wrote, I am not the fastest rider out there but I am certainly a consistent rider and climber. Until just recently.

The last couple of months I began experiencing some mild chest pain, right smack in the middle of my chest, (over the sternum) when I climb. The pain goes away as soon as the hills flatten--but it is there at the start, something I had never experienced before. In a couple of recent climbs my HRM alarm beeped when I exceeded 165 bpm. That had never happened to me before.

At first, I did not pay much attention to the pain. After all, we all ride through occasional pain. Rule #5 has always been my riding mantra. But other "signs" have been cropping up that have caused me to be concerned. For example, yesterday I rode 42.5 miles at an 17.4 mph pace--mostly flat course with no wind. By the time I hit mile 40 I was almost too tired to finish; it took a bit of effort just to finish the last 2.5 miles. The worst part of it was watching riders in my group, riders that I normally leave behind, riding past me and leaving me behind. Argggg.

I am 57 years old and have diabetes and asthma. When I saw my asthma doctor for my regular check-up I told him about the chest pains. He immediately called a cardiologist and made an appointment for me--right on the spot.

I saw the cardiologist on Friday and he took an EKG, which is pretty much unless in my situation except to show that the electrical signals from my heart are OK. Tthe doctor then ordered a nuclear treadmill test. The test is set for November 1. The doctor told me that it is OK for me to keep riding, just avoid exerting myself--no more climbing hills until the test results are in.

Just the word nuclear, attached to the word test, is pretty scary. But that is not what has me worried.

According to the Heart Association and the ADA, heart disease (including heart attacks and strokes) are the leading cause of death for diabetics (and right up there for asthmatics as well). That has me very concerned.

Now I ride with an eye on my Garmin computer. The moment my heart rate reaches 80 to 85 percent of my max, I ease up on the pedals. I really hate riding like this...I have always prided myself on pushing myself hard and riding to the limit of my physical abilities.

I am not sure why I am posting this, except maybe to vent a little and rail against he unfairness of certain diseases that leave you looking good (well, relatively good for me) on the outside while destroying you, bit by bit, from the inside.

I trust that God has a plan for me and that there is a reason for this. I just wish that He would sometime take time from His schedule and clue me in on what His plan is. It would make it a lot easier to accept some things.

I will let you all know how the November 1 test comes out...
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Old 10-14-13, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
only in that that we wont be around much longer anyhow, so any slow growing malignancy wont have too much longer to use the host.

Well also because cell reproduction rate is lower so there are fewer opportunities for mutant daughter cells. And that brings up the reduced effect on sex organs that are probably dormant anyway. They use old guys as "rad sponges" at the big nuke plants because they can do work in the hot zones and max out their lifetime recommended dose.

And if eja_B happens to already be bald... probably nobody will notice when his eyebrows fall out too.
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Old 10-14-13, 06:59 PM
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Chernobyl fried people past their lifetime dose in a few minutes ..
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Old 10-14-13, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by zvez View Post
articulate the anxieties you're having about the wait and ask your cardio if he can get you in sooner for the test.

Failing that, it's probably wise to take it a bit easier until after you get the results from the stress test. I'm assuming he's going to use a treadmill rather than chemically stress you since you're in good shape. During the test they'll inject contrast and take images of your heart at various stages.

If you do end up with a positive stress test loads of terrific treatment options out there today. Some of the best developments for Angina/coronary artery disease treatment have come along in the last ten years.
I got a call this evening from the cardio. There has been a cancellation and they can do the test this Wednesday, assuming my insurance carrier approves the procedure. YAY....I am going to be nuked...hopefully.
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Old 10-14-13, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
Well also because cell reproduction rate is lower so there are fewer opportunities for mutant daughter cells. And that brings up the reduced effect on sex organs that are probably dormant anyway. They use old guys as "rad sponges" at the big nuke plants because they can do work in the hot zones and max out their lifetime recommended dose.

And if eja_B happens to already be bald... probably nobody will notice when his eyebrows fall out too.
I still have most of my hair...though it is largely grey by now.

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Old 10-15-13, 05:25 AM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
I got a call this evening from the cardio. There has been a cancellation and they can do the test this Wednesday, assuming my insurance carrier approves the procedure. YAY....I am going to be nuked...hopefully.
Good luck on that test.
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