The QA hospital is one huge building, been around since 1904. Parts of it are old and past their best. After twelve hours of sitting in the emergency department, they sent me to one of these old wards.
This ward was not the cleanest place I have ever been in. It was shabby and untidy, and the staff seemed like robots on automatic pilots. An assessment ward is where they put you if unsure of your treatment. Eventually, I would be moved and secretly quite glad of that.
After a few hours, a couple of porters turned up to take me somewhere else. I thought I would walk there, but no. I was told to climb on the bed, and off we went.
I assumed, wrongly, it turned out that my destination would be nearby, but it was on the other side of the hospital, so it was a long ride.
The ward I found myself in couldn’t have been more different. The minute they pushed my bed and me through the door, the patients already there cheered and welcomed me.
It was at the top of the building. It looked new, bright and airy, spacious and cheerful. I was really impressed. The view from the windows was amazing. I could see the sea and most of Portsmouth, including the Spinnaker Tower.
The difference didn’t stop there. In the other ward, you always had to ask for things, like fresh water or help. Here in this ward, chilled water arrives regularly as if by magic. I would only be there for a few days, but those lovely ladies made a sorry occasion much better.
So, time to tell you the bad news.
It had been eleven years since my first heart attack and subsequent stent, so I was expecting more of the same. After my arrival in the Cath Lab yesterday, for what was going to be quick and easy like the last time, I was confident that my troubles were over.
The time went by, and after a while, I knew something was wrong. And when the technician approached me with one of the saddest faces and quietly said, ‘I am sorry, my hopes fled.
There was a blocked artery, but it was hiding behind the stent they put in last time. I wonder how often that happens? They had tried several times to clear the blockage and had to admit defeat. I had the feeling this didn’t happen very often, judging by his face. Later, the consultant explained that it resisted because the blockage had been growing for a while.
Hearing this, I felt really guilty. This had to be my fault, as I have ignored the signs for ages, not wanting to upset Anita and cause her more problems. Her heart problems are so much worse than mine!
So, I have come home with new medication to ease the problem, but if it doesn’t do the trick, there is another procedure they can do to solve the problem. They seemed reluctant to do it yet, so I wonder why they didn’t do it while I was spreadeagled on the table…