Tuesday, 20 September 2011
Health - Choose your parents well!
There's some tension in my husband's family this week, as one sister (72) has just had stents put into two almost-closed cardiac arteries (I saw the photo!). She has had angina for some time. This galvanized the other siblings into action - another sister (70) flew into Cape Town yesterday and is having an angiogram today, after tests at her country GP showed her blood pressure to be 220/120. She has also had pains in her back. We await her results today. My husband went off for a check this morning but didn't fast, so he'll have to have blood tests for his (forgotten) annual check-up tomorrow. He did have an ECG though on the bicycle - that was fine (he is 62), but his knees collapsed when he got off! All this after his older brother had a quadruple by-pass in January - his wife went therefore for a check-up and also went in for stents the same day! Gosh! Would they all have been dead and gone from heart attacks 30 years ago? I like to think I am safe as I have no history of heart problems in any of my close relatives. Nevertheless, the doc made me do the bicycle thing before he consented to renew my chronic meds last month. Thankfully, my heart appears to be fine - although I did have to ask the nurse to help me get the pedals going - they were so stiff and my thighs appear to be somewhat weak! The thing is - should we go for all these check-ups? One is inclined to put one's head in the sand and hope for the best, but does this add up to peace of mind or merely increase subconscious worries? I guess we have to ask ourselves, "Do I want to live in good health as long as possible or not?" One thing about a stent - it is a clever but simple procedure, done under local anaesthetic, through an artery in the groin.