“You can die from that. I’m sending you to hospital” Part 1

Well this is no doubt going to be a multi-parter because I really don’t know where this entry will lead me. But I can at least start at the beginning.

Some of you who read this blog and who know me well perhaps know already. On Friday the 7th January I was rushed into hospital in Corbeil-Essonnes. They finally let me come home yesterday.

Before that Friday I had been struggling to breathe for no apparent reason. OK over the festivities I had been ill with a cold bug which made me cough a lot. But this was something weird. For 2 or 3 days I was breathless, even when doing something simple like changing a nappy or making up a bottle for my daughter.

Eventually I was pushed (says he who doesn’t like going to see the Doctor) into seeing our généraliste (GP) who fitted me in between appointments at 8.30am on that Friday morning. He seemed to have an idea what was wrong, although he didn’t tell me at that stage but sent me for various examinations immediately. X ray of my lungs, a blood test and then finally a “doppler” on my leg. I guess we’d call it an ultrasound scan, but I’ll refer to it as a doppler as I’m more comfortable with the French equivalent.

The X ray didn’t show up anything. But by the afternoon I was sent for the doppler, ironically with the same Doctor who had diagnosed me with a Thrombosis (phlébite in French) in my right leg 10 years ago. He scanned my whole right leg as a matter of course, as my GP had asked. It was then I had a total shock when he gave me the line I’ve used as a title for this series of articles.

I just remember feeling a rising feeling of fear and panic at the same time then I thought of my kids (and told him so)… this was serious. My FIL had been running me around all day, so after a wait while all the paperwork was sorted out he drove me from Evry where I’d had the scan straight to the hospital in Corbeil. I have to confess that getting stuck in heavy evening rush-hour traffic didn’t help one little bit as lots of very dark things filled my mind. Once in hospital I was kept waiting for quite a while on a bed in the “Urgences” (A&E) while I waited for Thumpah to dash over from work. That was pure hell too.

She eventually arrived – the only thing I could say was a feeble “I’m scared”. I’ll be honest there, I was and just couldn’t hide it. Finally they wheeled me into a “box” where the on duty Doctor cursed the one who had done my scan because I wasn’t supposed to have “walked” into hospital. In fact if I can re-wind a little. The Thrombosis had come back with a vengence 10 years on, but this time was a lot more menacing than the first time – in that it had sent blood clots to my lungs via my heart. This was why I couldn’t breathe.

Walking on my “bad” leg according to the Doctor would just make things worse as I had a big clot in my leg that had broken away from the main one and was moving around in the vein. To cut a long story short, it was a sort of delayed time bomb which could move up to my heart and lungs and eventually kill me. If the clots I already had didn’t do the job first!

So you can imagine I didn’t feel very good lying in that side box in A&E at Corbeil. But it seems they had a smoothly run drill ready for me – blood tests -I was injected with blood thinning agents and then put straight onto oxygen. They moved me into a side ward at the back of A&E for the night still on oxygen. Thumpah stayed with me for as long as she could. I spent a very disturbed night where I had to get used to the “pistolet” (the plastic bottle you have to pee into) – I didn’t do a very good job the first time and found the whole thing embarrassing. I was confined to bed and not allowed to get out of it and had to wait patiently until they moved me and bed into the main part of the hospital…

To Part 2…

0 Replies to ““You can die from that. I’m sending you to hospital” Part 1”

  1. Funny how people read scary stories with interest – I’ll be following your story too – especially now we know it had a -kind of- happy ending as you’re still able to tell the tale 😉

    And look, I did comment here and not on your FB, just to show I’m a good listener too ;D

  2. LOL – I guess this must bring out the morbid curiosity in people out there. Not really my intention. Just telling things how they were/are and trying to use this to stay well balanced because I’ve really had a very nasty scare. It certainly changes your outlook on a lot of things in an instant.

    I was pleased to have seen how many people were thinking of me on FB while I was away. It really does help so much and I am very grateful for everyones comments and also birthday wishes for the 14th.
    I still plan on celebrating that properly, tho… but not just yet eh? 🙂

  3. Nah, keep it for later, stay young a bit longer 😀

    I can imagine it was a bit of a blow – what with having 2 small children and so on… Just take care, do what the doc tells you to do and keep on walking 🙂

  4. I understand now why I didn’t read anything from you for a long time. I’m happy that your story ends well. I hope you feel better but I think you must be tired.
    Do you have some help at home during your convalescence ?

    I’m a bit late but Happy Birthday, I didn’t know that it was on the 14th.

  5. Hello Isabelle – Thanks for the comment. For the moment I have my MIL around who is OK to help with the kids. So I am very very lucky. As I get better I will try and take part in the school run. I can walk, but very slowly.

    Thanks too for the birthday wishes.

  6. Oh dear ! John, I took a break from the PC for a while and I had no idea you were in hospital. What a fright and what a stress for you and your family. Glad to see you’re back and looking OK and try and take it easy for a while. We wish you a speedy recovery . Bisous to the four of you, guys and take care.


  7. We were wondering where you’d gone to Izzy as you had disappeared from Facebook. Hope you are all OK.

    It is nice to gloss over things or make light, but we’ve had an awful couple of weeks. While I was in hospital Isa shared looking after the kids between her parents and one of our SIL’s. Meanwhile I was strictly confined to bed for the whole time. I am really glad to be out now, but the treatment is ongoing and it is going to take a little while before I’m back to normal again. I have to admit that at the moment “real life” away from being hospitalised is a bit of a shock and I can see that although people are really sympathetic with me at the moment here, I think it is a bit awkward for them and for me.

    Thanks a lot for the best wishes – I have been very lucky in having some great people on here including yourselves.

    Bisous à toi, Michael & Edin.

  8. yo m8,

    wow, hope all fixed , have to live the moments we have never knowing when and where we leave, lost my grandad just before christmas hard life, if you need anything give me a call ok m8

    1. Thanks Gram. At the moment they are trying to get my blood meds right. Meanwhile yesterday morning I fell on some black ice on the steps in front of our place.
      Bashed my elbow badly and hurt my back. Spent 4 hours yesterday waiting to see a Doctor, got an X-ray in about half an hour.

      Great 2011. LOL

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