Top 10 most-read Heart Sisters posts from 2021

by Carolyn Thomas    ♥   @HeartSisters  

Looking back on what I wrote about here during 2021 was a reminder to me that, in the world of women’s heart health, I seem to be all over the map. And I rarely write about regular heart stuff like cholesterol or drugs or heart-healthy recipes (because people above my pay grade write far more efficiently elsewhere about those things!)  Here, for example, are the Top 10 most-read Heart Sisters articles during this past year:

Continue reading “Top 10 most-read Heart Sisters posts from 2021”

Unseen, unheard: the commonly shared lived experience of patients

by Carolyn Thomas  ♥ @HeartSisters

At first, I was surprised that so many women living with breast cancer were following my Heart Sisters blog. I’ve never had breast cancer and I rarely write about breast cancer (except here, for example, on the known link between breast cancer treatment and subsequent heart disease). Yet what I was soon to learn was that heart patients have lots in common with cancer patients, or with anybody else who has been blindsided by a serious medical crisis. Although the diagnosis may be different, we can face the same shock, fear, confusion, pain and exhaustion experienced by all who suddenly know what it’s like to become a patient.

Abigail Johnston is one of those breast cancer patients. We follow each other’s blogs. She was a 38-year old lawyer and mother of two boys when she was diagnosed with Stage IV Metatastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) in 2017. She writes about this on her compelling blog, No Half Measures from her home in Florida.  Every word of her recent post called “Unseen and Unheard  hit home for me.        .       Continue reading “Unseen, unheard: the commonly shared lived experience of patients”

On Call With Dr. Dave: my interview about women & heart disease

by Carolyn Thomas   ♥   @HeartSisters   

You can tell from watching this interview how much fun it was to chat with Dr. David D’Agate about women’s heart disease. Dr. Dave is a preventive cardiologist in Long Island, New York,  board-certified in internal medicine, cardiovascular disease, and nuclear cardiology – and probably best described by this personal testimonial from one of his heart patients: “extremely knowledgeable, kind and funny.”  My favourite kind of physician.         . .           .          . Continue reading “On Call With Dr. Dave: my interview about women & heart disease”

The 2018 Heart Sisters blog posts you liked best

by Carolyn Thomas     @HeartSisters     December 30, 2018

This year, a “Best Of” list with a twist. Usually my behind-the-scenes WordPress stats page tracks total views so far for each article I write. That kind of all-time list, however, simply favours the oldest articles, most of which have the advantage of attracting readers over and over, year after year ever since I launched Heart Sisters back in 2009. So this year, here are your Top 10 most-read of the dozens of articles I wrote in 2018: Continue reading “The 2018 Heart Sisters blog posts you liked best”

The bumpy road between diagnosis and getting better

by Carolyn Thomas    @HeartSisters

bridge-2490738_1280You probably already know that it can be a scary road indeed leading from the moment you hear that initial diagnosis until the day you are able to start thinking of yourself as a person first, who just happens to be a patient. Until then, it’s a bumpy road with often more downs than ups, as I’ve written about here, here and here, for example. But researchers in Spain now suggest that there are actually four distinct stages that are predictably common among most patients on that road. Continue reading “The bumpy road between diagnosis and getting better”

The shock – and ironic relief – of hearing a serious diagnosis

by Carolyn Thomas    @HeartSisters

I vaguely recall my gurney being wheeled very quickly down a wide hospital corridor after I heard the words “heart attack” from the cardiologist who had been called to the E.R.  I stared up at the ceiling lights flicking by overhead, feeling freakishly calm, considering. Here’s what I recall thinking in my strangely calm state: when I’d first come into this same E.R. two weeks earlier, terrified that my symptoms of chest pain, nausea, sweating and pain down my left arm might be due to a heart attack, I had been right!

The symptoms had never been because I was “in the right demographic for acid reflux” (despite what the Emergency physician who’d sent me home that first day had confidently pronounced). But now, after two weeks of popping Gaviscon like candy for these increasingly horrific symptoms, I felt relieved. I knew that all of the people around me now would know how to take care of me. The shock of hearing my new (correct) diagnosis of heart attack was subsumed in that moment by a wave of profound relief. Continue reading “The shock – and ironic relief – of hearing a serious diagnosis”