“Doctors are able to identify silent attacks via an electrocardiogram (ECG) scan which reads any damage in the heart.
Heart disease is the world’s biggest killer, with the latest WHO figures showing it was responsible for 7.4 million deaths in 2012.
Experts believe many of the deaths happen in patients who have previously suffered a heart attack without knowing it.”
A month ago I was at the Clinique Pasteur in Toulouse for a follow-up stress test after my local cardiologist–Dr Lefevre (Dr Fever!)–decided that he was not a 100% happy with the annual test.
So my heart is on my mind–so to speak and this report caught my eye.
The heart attack you don’t know you’ve had.
I haven’t had one of these little earthquakes–yet!
But my mother died suddenly, aged 67, of a heart attack related to her Type One Diabetes and my middle brother–a Hollywood TV drama director–died suddenly of a heart attack at 58.
So two fatal attacks in the family are enough to give me pause.
A heart examination is one of the regular annual checks I have .
This involves ten minutes on an exercise bike with wires attached to your torso, monitoring how your heart is coping with the increasing level of effort you are having to exert on the bike.
[Kidneys, liver, feet, eyes, cholesterol, glucose, blood pressure—you name it, I am monitored.]
The heart is one of the organs put at risk by Diabetes.
And the problem for people with the condition is that it’s often not obvious there is a problem.
Our affected nervous systems can mask the symptoms–Monsieur Lefevre says it’s not clear why this happens–but being cautious and the least feverish man I know–he wanted to be sure the blip he saw was just a blip.
I’d been to the clinic in Toulouse a couple of times before–in fact I’d had three stents fitted there successfully three years ago–a procedure that may have saved my life.
This time the sweet doctor who showed me the X-ray results, pronounced it nothing to worry about (a blip) and me–fit for purpose.
Je vous remercie, Dr Lefevre–Give me Fever !