Friday, January 6

I saw my heart today!

Photo courtesy of the Keene, NH Public Library 
I got to see my heart today!

Back in November I mentioned that I made an appointment for a round of physical fitness test before I return to longer-distance training this year. (You know, finally taking that advice that you should "check with your doctor" before beginning any new fitness program... I've only been running for a decade or so. But better late than never, right?)

But I digress...
I saw my heart!

No, the doctors didn't do a heart transplant on me...

Today's appointment was for an echocardiogram. The Mayo Clinic writes that "An echocardiogram uses sound waves to produce images of your heart. This commonly used test allows your doctor to see how your heart is beating and pumping blood."

Basically, an echocardiogram is an ultrasound of your chest. You put on a hospital gown and lay on a table. A technician puts gel on a transducer and moves the transducer around your ribcage to get "pictures" of your heart from different angles.

At some points during the procedure I lay on my back, at other points I had to turn onto my left side. The weirdest bit was, when I was lying on my left side, the technician removed part of the table beneath me! Apparently you get a better view of the heart when the patient's body is in that position. The tables are built specifically for that part of the procedure.

Image is not drawn to scale.
But here's the cool part:
I got to see my heart!
(Oh wait... I said that already...)

Throughout the procedure, the computer screen was visible. For half an hour, I could see my heart pumping away. I was so proud of my little heart and all the work it does even when I'm just resting!

It was, by far, the coolest doctor appointment I've ever had!

What was your best (or worst) doctor's office experience?

1 comment:

  1. That sounds so cool! Now I want to see mine. I like the new header.


Penny for your thoughts?