Why in the world would a person choose to admit herself into a hospital to undergo scary tests on her heart? What!??! This doesn’t sound like fun? Well, you are right there. It’s not fun. In fact, it sucks. But, if the results will one day contribute to the ‘betterment of womankind’, count me in.
That’s the line my cardiologist used to get me onboard for the first Clinical Study. I say ‘first’ because, as it stands, I’m currently involved in my third study with the good folks at Cedars-Sinai Women’s Heart Center.
It’s probably the altruistic attitude of my doctor and all those I’ve met there that has prompted me to share what I’ve learned with you all. But, I digress. What we will discuss today is two of the major cardiac procedures I underwent when participating in a Study. But first…
Why Choose To Participate
Interesting question. I imagine that for each of us, the answer would be different. Are there holes in your diagnosis? If so, are you willing to try new therapies? Are you near enough to a research hospital that you could participate? How will this affect you and your family? The list goes on and on. Let’s just say, however, for the sake of argument, that you do enlist in a Cardiac Study. Here is what you can expect from my limited experience.
You will undergo tests to make sure that you meet the criteria for participation. Included will be a brief physical exam, a review of your medical history and a blood draw.
Depending upon the type of Study you’re involved in, you may have to undergo a Coronary Angiogram. The link provides all the details; what is done, what you can expect as far as recovery time, etc.
For my second Study, I underwent a Cardiac MRI. This test is certainly a bit more state of the art. If you are prone to claustrophobia, there are MRI machines with openings, which help a lot.
I know that ‘womankind’ will certainly benefit from the finding in the Clinical Studies I participated in. Even now, my symptoms have significantly decreased because of the findings of and adjustments made to my medication. But, as with anything, its good to know what you’re getting into before you get involved. Don’t you agree?
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