Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Cardiovascular Study description continued...
After a week of salt tablets and a test day, there is a "free week" where one simply returns to a normal diet, and whatever exercise level is customary for you. Restrictions apply again for the time leading up to the second testing day, such as no alcohol, caffeine, vigorous exercise, medications (and also includes anything herbal or "alternative").
As always, urinalysis and pregnancy tests are conducted, followed by a flexible catheter being inserted intravenously. They take an initial draw to determine the level of certain chemicals in the blood, and this time, if salt has been significantly reduced, testing continues.
A diuretic called furosemide (a sulfa drug in about 40 different brand names!) is administered through the arm IV, and after about 10 minutes this of course causes increased urination. Everything is collected for analysis and the medical staff monitors blood pressure is monitored throughout the "peak effect" of the meds. After about an hour, the IV is removed. The effect can continue, sometimes up to 6 hours, but more commonly about 4.
The is to continue to lower sodium, and potassium can also drop. Common symptoms might be dry mouth and mild light-headedness, as with any stage of dehydration… but then you can drink as much water as you like.
Upon leaving, the team gives you a big box of food and water – your precise diet for the next 24 hours before the second round of tests. More on that fun menu later...
Posted by PillowNaut at 8:54 AM