Posts about afib

My cheatin’ heart

I’ve mentioned before that I sometimes get atrial fibrillation — irregular heart rhythm — and it has struck again, lasting longer this time than usual. As I write this, a convention of Mexican jumping beans is staging a revolt somewhere south of my sternum. I had to give a big presentation last night and otherwise function as a normal person in the last 48 hours with this going on inside. It’s quite possible to do so, just weird.

I got the condition in a chain of events from 9/11: I got pneumonia from inhaling the cloud of destruction at the World Trade Center and when doctors tested my lungs, they spritzed something in there that unleashed my until-then-blocked betas. Every time it has struck, the doctors have given me different rules and treatment. This time, I’m giving myself shots in my stomach: Yes, I am rabid. And other fun awaits.

But here’s the strange part: Four out of the last seven or so times I’ve commuted through the PATH station at the World Trade Center, my heart has gone wacky. Three of those times, it calmed down and returned to normal rhythm within five minutes or so. This last time, it hasn’t calmed down. I can’t figure out what the connection to the WTC is. No, it’s not post-traumatic stress disorder; I’ve been commuting through that station without incident or upset since they reopened it. I almost wonder whether the construction they’ve begun has unleashed some odd chemical, but I doubt that. It’s just wacky.

Anyway, this — and work — is why you’ve seen a relative paucity of posting in recent days. I’m working at home today, so you’ll be stuck hearing more from me later.