I’m actually quite relaxed but the purpose of today’s testing is to stress my heart and take some pictures.

I’m at a new hospital today, Toronto Western, on the 5th floor in the east wing.

After the usual check-in it’s into a lovely hospital gown and off to the exam room. Blood pressure, temperature and some questions. Then I’m hooked up to an EKG with 13 leads, lots of sticky patches all over my chest. Then it’s an injection with some radioactive stuff and I wait for about 30 minutes while it circulates. The next step is about 20 minutes under the camera where they collect the images. This concludes the resting portion of the test.

After the imaging I’m free for about 90 minutes where I can have some lunch and drink something but still no coffee. ☕️

I’m called back in and the stress part starts. I’m reconnected to the EKG and a blood pressure cuff and it’s on to the treadmill.

The goal is to get my heart rate to 151bpm. Apparently, 124 is the minimum requirement but I’m going all the way! Things start up slowly for a couple of minutes and then the speed and incline increase. At the top rate it’s a very brisk walking pace. As I hit 151 a nurse appears and injects the 2nd dose of radioactive stuff while I’m still on the treadmill. In under 12 minutes it’s all done.

Constant monitoring of my heart (EKG) and blood pressure.

After a brief cool down I wait a few more minutes and then the second set of pictures are taken. They confirm the images are good and I’m free to go.

The next morning we hear about the results and I “passed” so I’m good to go for chemo and the CAR-T.