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Dealing With Doctors

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I walked half-way through my daily exercise and stopped to catch my breath. I thought I was walking too fast or was exhausted from work so I decided to cut it short and head home that evening.

One week later I was feeling the same. I was struggling to catch my breath in between taking care of my patients. Smallest chores became a burden. I felt like I was carrying a big rock on my chest; so I took off and went to see my primary care physician.

Her first impression was that I was going through too much stress and needed to relax, but I told her there was something more than stress. She gave me a prescription for anxiety pills and I took them for ten days. My pain increased quite a bit. So, I went to see my doctor again.

This time I told her I felt the issue resided in either my lungs or heart. I had a gut feeling that maybe I was having angina, since my whole family is diabetic with a history of heart problems. She sent me to her husband who was a pulmonary specialist and he ran some tests. She believe I was too young to have a heart problem. The pulmonary tests came negative. Still, I was given nebulizer to breathe more freely and antibiotics for bronchitis.

Three weeks later I could not take but two or three steps at a time. I didn't know what else to do but visit my primary again. By this time I was hardly sleeping in the nights fearing that I would not wake up in the mornings. Once in a while, in the middle of the night, I found my 14-year-old holding his finger near my nose to see if I was still alive.

This time I insisted on visiting a cardiologist to get my heart checked. So I was sent to a cardiologist; another associate/friend of my primary . I was told I'd be given a stress/echo test in the office within the next week. Meanwhile I was having trouble getting the day off at work for this test by my supervisor.

Somehow, I managed to keep my appointment. The test results came positive and I was told I would need a cardiolite stress test with nuclear images. I waited another week and by this time, it had been four weeks since my troubles started.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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