Thursday, February 22, 2007


I don't write much about science because it's definitely not my expertise. I read a lot of layman's science in quite a few fields but medical science especially interests me. In my job I've learned a fair amount about drugs and drug development and the diseases they are intended to combat because PR firms working for pharmaceutical companies are clients, so is the Dana Foundation which supports brain research. I've gained a better than usual layman's understanding and a decent vocabulary. My curiosity only grows and grows as I grow older and find some of these medical matters becoming personally important. Some months ago I wrote a little about making this small art quilt called "A WOMAN'S HEART" which shows the route of an angioplasty and/or stent placement such as I had over a year ago.

I spent the better part of today having my heart looked at by every "non-invasive" method available. There were EKGs of course, and an echo cardiogram which happens in a darkened room as a computer makes occasional spooky gutteral groans. I had a radioactive isotope injected so pictures could be taken of my blood glowingly pumping through the heart before and after a treadmill stress test during which the EKG ran and the blood pressure cuff sent it's readings. I lay on my back for fitteen minutes at a time while a reptilian {well, so it seemed although it was all metal as far as I could see] scanning arm curled around my chest and then uncurled, sighing every time it changed position. Then I lay on my stomach as it did the same all over again.

The preliminary word is that all is well. The M.D. will study the various pictures/printouts more carefully and let me know her summary in a couple of days. I was happy to stay on the treadmill for six minutes which I had not been able to do before the stent placement. And all without twinge in the replaced hip. So Hurray!!

As I lay unmoving under the dinosaur's necck, I thought what an amazing city this is -- which I often think. Thought yesterday in fact as I walked in Soho and the Village. Who knows what wonders of science are happening in some small suite of rooms on the first floors of these big buildijngs? Who knows which buildings hold a tiny 50 or 100 seat theatre where fascinating, or godawful, or mostly mediocre, new plays are being produced every week. Who knows in what half-rennovated brownstone a batch of people are watching man-in-the-street videos and Martha Stewart show segments and turning them into transcripts? Who knows what a lot of other strange and wonderful things are hapening down any street at any time of the night or day? To me this is the meaning of a major city as contrasted with a small town where, mostly the buildings hold less complex, less unexpected secrets.

By the way that picture in yesterday's blog wasn't a fit of ego. The guy helping me learn how to redo my blog told me that to put a picture in my profile, I need to have one on my blog. So it will, Ithink, eventuallly go on the profile page...once I can figure out how to put it there.

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