Monday, April 18, 2011

Touching one life at a time

Just had to share this, since there are so few resources out there for us SCAD-ladies (SCAD: spontaneous coronary artery dissection). We ourselves pretty much *are* the resource.

A lot of cardiologists have never seen a SCAD, there's no standard treatment for them, no one has a definite answer on what causes them.

This is how we SCAD ladies do it, one on one, one SCAD survivor to another.

My husband and I have been on vacation this past week, no email, no Internet. I got home Saturday night and was reading my messages and found one from a lady who sounded so much like me, that I almost cried.

Two years ago, I could've written her email: she'd had a heart attack out of the blue--actually two, two days apart--in early April, doctors found out it was caused by a SCAD, they'd never heard of a spontaneous dissection before, and they sent her home with a handful of new drugs and precious little else.

She got my email address from the WomenHeart messageboard on the Inspire site and sent me an email, which I found while going through the messages that accumulated while I was out of town.

She's a few years older than me, but otherwise we could be twins--like me, she had no prior risk factors; this just hit her like a bolt of lightning. She's scared of it happening again, doesn't know where to turn.

I pretty much dropped everything else I was planning to do that night--unpacking, laundry, paying bills, cooking supper--and wrote her a long, reassuring email.

We are all holding hands: like the SCAD sisters reached out to me when I was newly home from the hospital and scared, now it's my turn to reach out to these new, scared SCAD patients.

Heart to heart, hand in hand, an unbroken line of support from one woman to another. If I can help one frightened, newly-diagnosed SCAD lady as much as the women I found helped me, I'll be content.

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