My heart slows


This is (regrettably) from a mass e-mail to my family members:

I had an appointment with a new cardiologist today, the leading local expert on my old heart condition, neurocardiogenic syncope. In case you are unaware, I began experiencing heart palpitations, dizziness, and fainting episodes again starting shortly before Memorial Day. Convinced it was my thyroid cancer medication, I hastened to the ER in search of answers. I fainted in the ER on Memorial Day, and again on a Holter monitor (24 hour heart monitor) on Wednesday. The good news is, they gathered lots of great information because I was on a heart monitor both times.

After reviewing my old chart and all the new information, the cardiologist feels my fainting episodes are related to a very low heart rate, which fell to 32 beats per minute just before I fainted both times. He feels that the time has come when the benefits of a pacemaker outweigh the risks. He does not feel that I require a defibrillator at this time. He plans to do a tilt table test and implant a loop recorder, which is about the size of 50 cent piece. The loop recorder will remain in place for one month (possibly up to 14 months if I have no symptoms - pray for that!), and is inserted just under the skin on my chest over my heart. (By increments we are lessened) It will capture my EKG and give the cardiologist more information with which to make the final treatment decision.

The tilt table test and recorder implantation are scheduled for June 23. I may get a pacemaker the same day if the results of the tilt table test end up a certain way. I would really appreciate your prayers, both for strength to get through the 23rd as a student and mother while fainting, and also for safety during the procedures on the 23rd and wisdom for the doctors treating me.