Chest pains

Had them in the night and again this morning. Decided that I ought to do something about it so Jan & I went to casualty.

After a whole afternoon of ECGs, blood tests, blood pressure tests, a chest X-ray and another blood test because the first one didn’t work properly, 5 hours later I was given a clean bill of health and told that I had probably pulled an intercostal muscle when riding my bike up Bread & Cheese Hill yesterday.

A very salutory experience in more ways than one.

Firstly, I was absolutely delighted with my cardiac performance. In all the times my blood pressure was checked (every 5 minutes or so the machine would take it automatically), the range was between 131 / 69 and 141 / 81. Typically my pulse rate was between 50 and 55. That’s pretty good for a middle-aged lard-arse.

Secondly, while we were waiting for the final blood test result to come along, I was moved out of A & E into the acute medical unit, i.e. I was admitted to a ward. It’s very sobering when a nurse comes and makes an inventory of your belongings and puts a name bracelet on your wrist. Suddenly you feel that you are no longer in control of your life.

Thirdly, now I know that I have the cardiovascular system of a finely-honed athlete, it only makes sense to get a body to match. I really must get my bloody weight down.

Fourthly, I was given a Hospital meal. I couldn’t survive on that! Denis informs me that the food in Southend is infinitely superior than the stuff served up at the Royal London.

Finally, the experience gave me an appreciation, which I certainly didn’t have before, of what my son has gone through over the past 12 years as his kidney disease has developed and has forced quite a few spells in hospital. I was an in-patient for about an hour and that’s more than enough for me!

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