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At a traffic light in front of Jamaica Pond, on my way to my doctor's appointment.



Not sure how much to say without friends protecting the post--my new doctor is aware I have a blog and it's not exactly hard to figure out how to find it. Then there's the issue of my insurance company using my blog to make me pay more--is that a thing? Sure could be I guess. I should probably keep stuff like this private. Oh well.

My doctor is very nice, again young but not as alarmingly young as my last few.
I have high blood pressure--or it was measured as such, three times. I admitted to being anxious, and I think she was trying to give me time to relax, but when the cuff went on I could feel my heartbeat. Have I developed an anxiety response to getting my BP read? How stupid.

I discussed my depression and anxiety and she actually listened.

I mentioned drinking and other habits and she gave me a reasonable threshold to follow, and told me 3 times not to smoke tobacco, and I told her there's no risk of that (I don't like the smell anymore).
I discussed early onset Alzheimers and she proposed checking my genes for risk factors.

The examination took an hour and was mostly talking.

I got an EKG and it was cool to be laying down with electrodes stuck all over me connected to bundles of wires. I wish I had a picture of THAT!

They are going to run a million blood tests but only took 4 vials of blood, and I didn't pass out or feel faint afterward. I told the phlebotomist "Nice work!" and she barely acknowledged. She was cranking out blood draws faster than one every 5 minutes.

Sometimes I compliment people and they think I'm being sarcastic. I don't know if that has to do with me, or the fact that sincere compliments are kind of rare.

Date: 2014-01-30 02:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] donnad.livejournal.com
I am tough blood draw because my veins are very deep. The last time I needed a draw, the regular nurse that usually does it at my doctors office was on vacation, She is awesome and never leaves a mark and last time she pulled 5 vials out of me and I didn't feel a thing.

They had a temp nurse filling it at the office. This temp nurse could not find a vein in either arm. She puts the needle in, I am just about screaming as she wiggles it around looking for a vein. I am gripping the chair with my opposite hand so tight I tore the vinyl with my fingernails. Eventually I tell stop, loudly. She claims she can't find the vein and I'll have to go over to the blood center at the local hospital and have the draw done. FINE, as long as she doesn't touch me again. I couldn't head over that day so I planned to go the next. The next day I woke up bruised from wrist to elbow in both arms. I had to wait for the bruising to go down before I could get the blood drawn.

So a week later when most of the bruising had faded, I went to the hospital. It was early so I was taken right in. It had to be a fasting blood draw so I had neither eaten nor drank anything yet that day. I was a bit dehydrated. The girl starts talking to me, the usual questions. I told her that I had to come to the hospital because the nurse couldn't find the vein and that's why there was still some residual bruising, and that I was a difficult draw because my veins were deep.

She put the tournquet on and pokes at the vein with her finger, then calls the older woman over, the older woman comes over, looks and nods and continues watching while the girl proceeds. (I hadn't realized at the time that the older woman was listening to us talk.) I didn't feel much beyond the usual prick, the girl took 3 vials, finished up. I noticed the older woman was a training supervisor. I asked the girl "are you new?" She said she was in training. If I had known from the start I might have requested an experienced person do the draw. But she was fabulous, she was quick and efficient, I barely felt it and had no bruising the next day. I made sure to compliment her on her technique and I specifically told the older woman, her supervisor, how good she was.

I hope they note in her records that she got the compliment.

Date: 2014-02-01 12:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lisianthia.livejournal.com
Being anxious when getting blood pressure readings at the doctor is actually a thing. They call it "white coat hypertension." When I had high blood pressure, my doctor told me to take it several times a week, record the numbers, and average them out to get the most likely accurate overall picture. I actually bought a home electronic blood pressure cuff because mine was dangerously high and I had to send my readings into the doctor, but you can probably find those free blood pressure taking machines around the pharmacy section of grocery stores and Targets.

Date: 2014-02-01 01:24 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] urbpan.livejournal.com
I've been reading my BP with a little home device for a couple days and it's lower than when I was at the doctor but still a bit too high. I'm hoping to talk to my doctor about it and discuss whether medication is necessary at this point.

Date: 2014-01-30 09:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] urb-banal.livejournal.com
phlembotomist eh? I didn't know it had a name. I have had SO many blood samples taken by so many techs and I have really admiration for the ones who do it well. All of them at the cancer clinic are really good at it, you take a number like in a butcher shop and they call you, plop you down and draw five viles in seconds and send you on your way.

I always compliment them. The odd time I get someone new or who seems nervous I just chat as nonchalantly as possible and tell them it's okay, I've had plenty of draws they can't hurt me and it seems to make it go easier for them too.

Date: 2014-01-30 10:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] uneko.livejournal.com
Whenever I offer someone a 'sincere compliment,' I always make it a point to try and make it .. well, longer. It's easier to take "nice job" as sarcastic if you're in the wrong mood. So I always try to say "Thank you! I've never had my blood drawn so efficiently before!" or "Getting my blood drawn normally leaves me feeling dizzy after... but I don't now! Thank you!" or even "I really appreciate how efficient you are at that! Thank you!" or something. Taking a few extra words to express appreciation makes it a lot harder for people to think you're being sarcastic or catty :)

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