My (Mark) first medical issue ever happened on Monday night April 30th. It was a travel day for us traveling from Monahan’s to Ranger Texas; a 265 mile trip. That is a really long trip for us! We stayed at the Horseshoe RV Park just off of Interstate 20.
We decided to have a decadent over the top dinner of hot dogs wrapped in crescent rolls. We don’t eat this way very often but we were in the grocery store and just decided that we would have this some time while we were traveling. It’s pretty quick to make. After eating 3 of these crescent dogs I started to read an article on my phone when I noticed I was getting a headache around 7 pm.
Around 7:30 pm I was laying on the bed waiting for the 3 ibuprofen I took to kick in. I also had a heating pad on the left side of my head. This was by far the worst headache I had ever had.
By 9pm we went to bed and the headache was still there. I was now alternating ice and the heating pad which gave very little real relief. Around 11 pm I asked Patty to look up a local hospital ER that I could go to. Going to an ER is just not something I would do for myself and had never done before but something was really wrong.
We went to the Eastland Texas Memorial Hospital about 9 miles away. This is a tiny hospital and it was sort of hard to find even with our GPS. It really isn’t some place I would go on purpose but it was the closest place as we were really in the middle of nowhere.
|This is a very small hospital where there was the only one other patient in the ER the whole time I was there.|
I got right in at around midnight and after a few questions and some prodding and poking I got a CT scan. I was sort of amazed they had one of these machines in this tiny hospital. Now we had to wait for the results. I also had a Blood Pressure at 198/90 which is real high for me. I have never had pressure that high and my pressure is normally not even close to hypertensive.
They don’t have a radiologist at the hospital, they use a service. The service gets the scan via the internet and reviews it somewhere else in the country and then send in a report via the internet. We were told that it would take 5 – 20 minutes to get the results.
At 12:30 am the ER doctor said that he would review the CT scan for anything big and if the review had not come in pretty soon he would give me shot to relieve the pain and something for nausea which I didn’t really have.
The ER doctor came in around 1 am and said he didn’t see anything and gave me the shot and the anti-nausea med. By 1:30 am the pain had mostly gone away. I still had a little but felt good enough to go back to our RV home. However, my blood pressure was still at 150/85!
Tuesday the 1st of May was also a travel day to Tyler Texas. I still had a slight headache when I got up and a weird chest pain. It hurt in my center upper chest when I when down the steps in the RV. Basically it was just annoying, no real heavy pain.
We were doing our usual internet news reading before getting ready to leave and travel to Tyler TX when my phone rang with the Eastland Hospital. The woman on the phone asked if I was still having a headache to which I said I was having a light one this morning. She said that they just got the radiologist report from my CT scan last night and it showed a slight shadow in an area of my brain. She said that if I was still having headaches I should get an MRI. Well SHIT! We thought they had the report from the radiologist but we were wrong about that!
I asked if I could get the report and they that I could I just needed to sign for it. So I went in to get to get it before we left the area. I wanted it because when and if I get the MRI I wanted this report so it would move things along quicker when I went in for it.
OK, so now I have the report and I read it in the truck in the parking lot of the hospital. Not so sure it is a good thing giving me a medical report because I will study the crap out of it whether it is about me or Patty. I was a little scared after I read the report! It said that I had an area of unusual density about ½ inch by ¼ inch in the scan. It went on about the location which I am still not sure about. Anyway, the scary part was what the radiologist suggested it could be. It could be a meningioma or other mass, a localized hemorrhage is possible, Aneurysm is possible. The other interesting thing was that the report didn’t get to the hospital until 8:59 am!
I looked all of this up on the internet back at the RV and yeah, it could be life threatening and, maybe not! The meningioma is usually a non-malignant tumor. These things are somewhat common and usually grow real slow and many people don’t know they have them until something else is being looked for. I don’t like this but that is not real scary. The hemorrhage and the possibility of an aneurysm is pretty scary since it made me feel like I had time bomb in my head! I didn’t discuss with Patty what we should do so we went on to Tyler Texas.
Along the way I could really feel the pain in my chest when I went over bumps in the road. It seems to affect my headache too. I also developed a new pain; it was in my upper legs. When I walk or straighten out my legs it hurts like hell. I can also feel it in my head! FYI, the chest pain has gone away but the leg pain has increased to the point it is hard to walk around much at anything that with a slow gait.
We will be here in Tyler TX for 2 nights. We are now basically closer to our site in Elsa Texas than to where we are going in Sarasota Florida by a couple days. I discussed with Patty the possibility of going back to our site in Elsa and getting the MRI there or just continue to Sarasota Florida and do it there. We decided to wait and do it in Sarasota. We are not happy with the medical care in south Texas for one and we know we want to be in Florida on a more permanent basis. Yes it is a risk but one we both decided to take. I am just going to take it real easy until I can get the results of an MRI. That means no more exercising! That is a real killer for me but I have gone through this before, however not for a long time. I have a few time pushed myself and got hurt and then I had to lay off exercising for many weeks. So this is similar but much more at risk. I want to get fixed so I can return to normal exercising. Let’s hope anyway.
We left Ranger TX after I got the CT scan report. We headed another 230 miles to Tyler Texas.
|Of course we had to stop at Buc-ee's on our way through Texas.|
|The roadside wild flowers are really in bloom now!|
We stayed there at the Texas Rose RV Park. This RV park is quite the gem. The owner Ricky and his wife Annette really try to make your time there great. They had brand new charcoal grills with charcoal near by and lighter fluid for your use. This was at each campsite! They really are just good people. Oh, they are passport too so it was just $30 for 2 nights of 50 amp full hook up! Great little place to pull over and visit with Ricky and his wife while passing through.
|Our site at the Texas Rose RV park|
|One morning we were up at first light and the park office/coffee bar was open for business. It looked really cool this morning so I tried to capture the look in this photo.|
So, for Tyler Texas we decided to take it easy and just do as much as where I felt comfortable doing. We took a short tour of the rose gardens at the Rose Garden Center and we took a truck tour of the Azalea historic area. These were easy and quite nice to see. We also had lunch in downtown Tyler.
|This place is a must see in Tyler TX and it is FREE!|
|I caught a honey bee in this picture|
|We were there just a few days too late for the blooming of the azaleas. We did get to drive around the historic area and see the houses though|
|Lunch at Rick's on the square in downtown Tyler TX.|