Doctor’s appointment… more typical aging symptoms?

June 8, 2006

I saw my doctor today, the very fine Doctor Al Rothman, my GP. He’s a great Doc. Naturally, I figured it was more aging things. You know, stuff like my eyesight going bad, or at least needing reading glasses in dark restaurants. Or my back bothering me, or knees, or what not. Or the time I complained of chest pain, worried about my heart… and it turned out I was drinking way too much caffeine (the EKG showed perfectly healthy, as opposed to the 4+ cups of coffee a day before heading into the office and at least another 4 before lunch). Or the first time I started peeing in Morse code. You know, start, stop, long, long, short. Hell, even Billy Crystal and David Letterman joke about peeing in Morse code. But boy, is that disturbing the first time it happens. So bottom line, I’m thinking this is nothing.

So I tell the Doc that when I wolf my food, it sometimes feels like it “gets stuck” going down. I need to wash it down with something, water preferred. I did a bunch of experiments, like eat a nice meal slowly and politely, as if I were in England or something — and no problems. I thought maybe my throat or something was drying out, so I went to Trader Joes for some pita bread, and ate a pita very slowly on my drive home from work. No problems. But if I wolf food down, as guys will do, yikes! And at the Macaroni grill with colleagues, it actually was a bit painful.

Doc always takes my complaints seriously, and said “okay, go have a Barium swallow”. I get it scheduled for 8am tomorrow, bright and early. But I’m told “don’t eat anything before hand”. Great. No morning coffee. Sigh.


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