Wednesday, May 16, 2007

How to Get Immediate Medical Care Part 2

This is part 2 of my recent medical drama, the story for which begins in the post below.

The irony with the whole situation is that if I had had some medical care earlier on, maybe I would not have worked myself into such a frenzy, and I would have saved my insurance company a bunch of cash on ultrasounds and emergency appointments. Hopefully I won't have to pay too much out of pocket. For the record, the symptoms of ectopic pregnancy and an anxiety attack have a lot in common:

What symptoms can a woman experience with ectopic pregnancy?

* Abdominal pain (90-100% of women)
* Absence of menses ("not getting your period") (75-90%)
* Unexpected bleeding through the vagina (50-80%)
* A vague soreness or spastic (colic) pain in the abdomen
* Abdominal pain can be generally everywhere, or it can be in a specific spot (localized) in one side or both sides
* Pain in the shoulder because of diaphragmatic (broad muscle under the lungs and heart that separates the chest from the abdomen and helps move the lungs during normal breathing) irritation from blood in the abdomen (25%)
* Dizziness and fainting (33%)
* Pregnancy symptoms (20%)
* Urge to have bowel movement (defecate) (10%)

Common symptoms of anxiety attacks
(source: The Linden Center)

* Rapid heart beat, pounding heart or palpitations
* Sweating
* Shaking visibly or inside
* Choking sensations or lump in throat
* Smothering or shortness of breath sensations
* Chest pain or discomfort
* Nausea, bloating, indigestion or abdominal discomfort
* Dizziness or unsteadiness
* Feeling light-headed
* Derealisation (feeling unreal or dreamy)
* Depersonalisation (feeling outside yourself or like you don't exist)
* Fear of losing control or going crazy
* Paresthesias (numbness or tingling sensations) in face, extremities or body
* Chills or hot flushes
* Skin losing colour
* Blushing or skin blotches
* Urgently needing to urinate or defecate

So I'm not totally crazy. But I do admit that the anxiety attack symptoms were a 95% match with my symptoms, whereas the ectopic symptoms were only about 70% similar.

Regardless, I feel better now just knowing I have medical care available. If my blood tests look good this week, I might actually buy some transitional maternity clothes. I'm not really the "rubber band around the button" type. I like my clothes to fit and be comfortable.

When I got home from the appointment with Dr. Mango, I called Steve. I told him about my day and reported that I had seen the heartbeat. He immediately started giggling. "Did you?" he laughed, adding, "it's really little."

I think he's imagining it as a teeny tiny cute little baby, rather than a tiny mollusk with a giant head and a vestigial tail.

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