connectVideoNew York nurse, 25, gets pacemaker after self-diagnosing life-threatening condition
A 25-year-old nurse on New York’s Long Island is equipped with a pacemaker, earlier this month, after she self-diagnosed her troubling symptoms after a hip injury.
A 25-year-old nurse on New York’s Long Island is equipped with a pacemaker, earlier this month, after she self-diagnosed her troubling symptoms after a hip injury. Katie Barber said that it all started with a hip fracture in her teenage years that began to disturb her again in 2018.
“About a year ago I noticed that I was having severe pain in the hip, and a CT scan showed I had a torn labrum in my right hip,” she told MDW-Functions. “My orthopedic surgeon found that over time, bone degeneration led to wear and tear injury of my right labrum.”
Barber told the news outlet she underwent an arthroscopic repair and non-weight bearing for two weeks, but when she started physical therapy she noticed shortness of breath and began to evaluate her own symptoms.
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“A nurse, I began to wonder if this could be deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE),” she told MDW-Functions. “I never thought something like this would happen to me, but I went to the hospital just to be safe. Well, I’m glad I went because it turns out that I had a right leg DVT with bilateral Oda.”
DVT occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein in the body, and is often the result of vein damage or slowed blood flow. Risk factors include injuries to the lower body, or surgical procedures involving the hip, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS). If the blood clot travels through the body, it can block the blood flow in the lungs resulting in a pulmonary embolism, which can be fatal. It can also lead to permanent damage to the veins, which can lead to long term problems.
Barber said she was diagnosed with a clotting disorder and a heart condition called junctional rhythm in which she discovered after suffering from episodes of dizziness.
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“I felt as if I couldn’t get out of my bed,” she said MDW-Functions. “I was weak and could not stand for more than a few minutes at a time. In September 2018, I went to the hospital and found an abnormal heartbeat, later diagnosed as a junctional rhythm. I was admitted in the hospital for eight days of the receipt of IVs due to low blood pressure. The next day I have chest pain and trouble breathing. A chest X-ray showed fluid in my lungs, oxygen for a few days.”
Although Barber tried several different medications, her doctors reportedly decided that a pacemaker would be the best course of treatment for the hair.
“25 years old, I was hesitant to have a pacemaker, but the unpredictability and the symptoms associated with this abnormal heart rhythm was to be a significant influence on my lifestyle,” she told the news outlet.
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On Feb. 5, a pacemaker was placed within a Hair chest. She said that she already noticed more energy and the dizziness disappeared.
“As a cardiac ICU nurse, I’m accustomed to seeing patients with a pacemaker,” she said. “Most are much older, but there are a fair share of the younger patients also need these devices. It seems that more people without a formal education, don’t understand the purpose of a pacemaker, and, more importantly, the normal lifestyle that one can give.”