Tag Archives: Cardiologist

Two Very Different AliveCor ‘KardiMobile’ ECGs — Appears There Is A Right & Wrong Orientation.

by Anura Guruge


Click images to ENLARGE.



So, two different ECGs. The top one is mine, the bottom one isn’t. Both were APPROVED by the so called AliveCor board-certified cardiologist. The bottom one looked wrong to I — and I am by no means an ECG expert. The spikes are going down when I am used to seeing them going up. But, AliveCor said it was OK.

So, what did I do?

What any sensible person would do. I turned to Twitter! When I posted yesterday’s post on Twitter a number of ‘doctors’, to my amazement, responded. So, I asked them. Glad I did. Appears that the KardiMobile has a right and wrong orientation. I guess the name ‘Kardia’ (and the upside down ‘V’) should be such that you can read it — the right way up. Wow. Simple as that. So, the reading was correct. ECG is correct — just upside down.

Click to ENLARGE.


Related posts:
Search ‘Garmin’ & ‘ECG’


by Anura Guruge

I Got An AliveCor ‘KardiMobile’ So I Can Get ECGs WITHOUT An Apple Watch Series 4.

by Anura Guruge


Click images to ENLARGE.



I got it yesterday, Saturday, and only managed to try it out at 1:54am the next day. Yes, nearly 2am on Sunday. This is normal for I — and as you can see from 60bpm heart rate I do good at night.

AliveCor insists that the first ECG has to be APPROVED by a Board Certified cardiologists BEFORE you can see it. Seems like an unreasonable imposition to I. But, no way you can get around it. They say that the turn-around will be within 24-hours.

Mine was approved when I checked my e-mail at ~9am in the morning. So, that was pretty good. Looks like I will live through at least this coming week.

Don’t know it is right or accurate. The heart rate was spot on SINCE I had my Garmin Fenix 5 on — and also checked my blood pressure with a cuff. Both of them also said 60 bpm, which is fairly average for I if I am sitting down doing nothing. So, at least that part is correct.

The ‘Kardi’ APP is kind of obnoxious. Won’t let you take screenshots BUT you can e-mail your ECG. So, I just e-mail myself each ECG. They arrive as PDF. Once I have the PDF I can do whatever.

I don’t see the need for the $10/month PREMIUM option. Just e-mail the ECGs to yourself.

It does NOT require Bluetooth or PAIRING. It works via an ultrasound signal picked up by our phones microphone. So, that is easy enough.

Yes, you can let others use it. I already did. No problem.

I am NOT attaching it to my phone. That is stupid. I am storing it in the rather nice box it came in. That works. That is the blue packaging you see in the pictures.


Related posts:
Search ‘Garmin’ & ‘ECG’


by Anura Guruge

I Will Have To Admit That Dannon’s ‘Activia’ Yogurt Works — And Could Even Help YOU Lose Weight!

.Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail
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by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> David Cameron — low carb.
>> Validation of low-carb.
>>
Miracle of Low-Carb

>> Lost 2 turkeys in weight.
>> ‘Fast’ diet.
>> Will power no good for dieting.

++++ Search ‘low carb’ & ‘Cholesterol’ for the many, many posts on this topic >>>>


Activia-Coupons1I will readily admit that I was skeptical of Activia’s 2 week challenge.

I have eaten yogurt EVERY DAY, with nary an exception, since 1997. That is 18 years of eating yogurt daily — and I am not kidding about the daily. In a given year there might be, at most 5 – 6 days, when I do not eat yogurt — and that is probably because I am traveling and don’t have ready access to yogurt.

I have to thank, profusely, Dr. Joseph Misiewicz, of Meredith, New Hampshire — who is still practicing out of the same office — for introducing me to the yogurt habit.

Prior to his kindly advice that it would behoove me to eat some yogurt a day, I had NEVER even tasted yogurt — and I was 44 years old!

It all had to do with the ‘yogurt’, ‘curd‘ as it is called, in Ceylon/Sri Lanka. Though my adoptive father ate it with relish I could NOT stand it. And I associated yogurt with curd. So I had never, ever eaten yogurt prior to Dr. Misiewicz. He was a good doctor and I took what he said seriously. The problem was getting a taste for it. Luckily my then partner was very resourceful. She knew me quite well and realized that there was a way to get me into yogurt. She went and found the THICKEST custard yogurts that she could find, knowing (that in those days) I could not resist custards.

After a few months of eating the custard variety I was into yogurt. Soon stopped that. Deanna has had me on no fat/low fat Greek yogurt, with or without added sliced fruit — and the MANDATORY heaping of ground flaxseed (and that thanks to my excellent cardiologist Dr. Stephen Hanlon). I never saw a need for the ‘expensive’ Activia. As far as I saw I was eating my share of yogurt a day.


activiaThen came the Arizona trip. Given my desire to eat yogurt daily we stopped at a store to buy yogurt, cheese, fruit etc. They didn’t have variety in yogurts — mainly lots of Activa, all the packaging promoting the 2 week Activia challenge. So I told Deanna that I will do the challenge — and I was SURE that I would be able to ask for my money back because I could NOT see how Activa would make a difference. So the way I saw it I would have FREE yogurt for 2 weeks. We bought a ‘ton’ and kept the receipts.

I live Activa. I eat mainly the lime, coconut/vanilla and blackberry. The kids got a liking for it too. Within the week, once we got home, we were buying A TON — and I mean 4, 5, 6 packs of Activa.

Activa does seem to WORK. I am amazed. I would NOT dream of asking for my money back, because that would be dishonest. I don’t know why, but Activa does appear to work. Moreover, since I have been eating Activa, for a month or so now, I have lost even more weight! Not much. Maybe 2 pounds, BUT it all counts.

So, I am SOLD. If you open our fridge these days you will be confronted with a WALL of Activa. Yes, it is not ‘cheap’ BUT it is well worth the money.

So we are voting for Activia.


I Have Lost Two Large Turkeys Worth Of Weight Since Last Thanksgiving.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

2012 Thanksgiving at the Sheraton Portsmouth



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 .by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
++++ Search ‘diet‘ for other posts re. my diet >>>>


Since yesterday morning I have been trying to defrost a 18 pound turkey for tomorrow’s Thanksgiving dinner.

This morning I was lugging it around, and it is quite heavy, to put it in a large pan of water, when I suddenly realized that I had lost much more weight than this heavy turkey in my hand. It was quite a realization.

As of this week I have lost over 30(+) pounds since January 22 of this year. That is when my cardiologist told me to lose 20 pounds. Well, I am an overachiever, plus on this low-carb diet I will lose weight. I am not trying too hard. I am NEVER hungry. I eat more than I ever did. Just very little carbs. I am sure my cholesterol is probably in excess of 500 … but he didn’t tell me to reduce my cholesterol (which was in the 90s). I only take 10mg of Liptor so I have plenty of scope to increase my dose.

I hope you all realize that turkey and ham is on sale all over N.H. this week. I have an upright freezer full of ham and turkeys! I have been picking up both every time I go by a supermarket. I am afraid to count. But, I think we have at least 5 turkeys and 5 hams — not counting what I took out for tomorrow.

So I went and fished out a 12 pound turkey.

That was 30 pounds. Devanee lugged them. She was suitably impressed.

30 pounds is 30 pounds.

Anura Guruge

The turkey in the green wrapping is 12 pounds. The other one, which we are having for Thanksgiving, is 18 pounds. So 30 pounds together. The weight I have lost since Thanksgiving last year; 189 pounds down to 159 pounds. Click if you dare.



What Is Happening To & At Huggins Hospital, Wolfeboro, NH?

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related Posts:
>>
Huggins Fair 2013 — Aug. 5, 2013.
>> My FALSE PSA from Huggins — Aug. 1, 2012.
++++ Search ‘Huggins‘ for other related posts >>>>


Mamogram 20130002

Mamogram 20130001


Notice anything strange
about this flyer we got from Huggins Hospital
on Saturday?

It was actually very timely. Deanna had had a physical at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (Concord) on Thursday and had been told to get a mammogram. She was thinking about getting it done at Concord Hospital when this flyer came.

I have never forgiven Huggins Hospital for the grief it caused me through its FALSE PSA reporting.

But, Huggins is our nearest hospital and we use it when we have to.

Something is not right at Huggins — of late.

We were there, in the Emergency Room (ER), a few weeks ago, crack-of-dawn, i.e., 8:30 am, on a Monday. Over the weekend Teischan managed to fall off a stationary skateboard and hurt her foot. Though it was slightly swollen I was sure that there were no broken bones. That is one of the many advantages of having played rugby, in school, in Britain, in the early 1970s. IF you yourself didn’t break anything, you were still likely to see at least one broken bone injury a game. So you get fairly expert at spotting broken bones. I do have an enviable diagnostic record in this respect. But, despite my assurances Deanna was not convinced. So we took Teischan to Huggins ER on Monday.

The ER was deserted. No patients. Just one rather bemused volunteer and two frumpy receptionists pretending to be busy. Though we were the only ones there it took the receptionists 20 minutes to get around to calling us.

Yes, we had to get an X-ray. So we accompanied Teischan, through multiple automatic doors, to the X-ray room (to call it a department would be a joke). [I was right. Just a strain. Ace bandage, which I had already done.]

The hospital was deserted. Empty. I have seen more activity in Arizona ghosts towns than at Huggins, of late.

Eerily quiet. So there is now this pervasive air of morbidness though the place is SPOTLESSLY clean — probably because they have so few patients.

Yes, we all know that Huggins stopped delivering babies years ago. I can understand that.

But, I heard recently that Huggins no longer has full-time cardiologists! How is that possible?

Wolfeboro, NH, the Oldest Summer Resort in the U.S., outside of Florida, is the Old People’s Capital of the U.S.

And we are not talking just, hoi polloi old folks. We are talking Mittens Romney RICH, very rich old folks with Titanium health policies.

What gives.

The new building looks a million dollars — and I know it costs much, much more.

But, the place is empty.

And then this flyer. [I know. You thought I forgot.]

So did you spot the incongruity?

There is NO PHONE NUMBER.

Just the Web URL.

Yes, it tells you to call your primary care provider to schedule an appointment, BUT is Huggins that ashamed of itself, and I can understand if they were, after how they screwed up my PSA, that they are too embarrassed to give out their phone number?

There phone number is, in case you want it:
603-569-7500.

IF You Are Concerned About Your Prostate Health Forget The TV Ads., Talk To A Doctor About A Prescription For Cardura (Doxazosin).

Dec2013x125

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..by Anura Guruge


Click for more info. or just do a search on 'Cardura'.

Click for more info. or just do a search on ‘Cardura’.


I have been meaning to write about this for months. Everytime I see those prostate ads on TV featuring ex-football players I cringe; for them and for those that might listen to their pitch.

Until I hit 45 I really did not know anything about prostates. I had heard a neighbor talk about it but I had not paid much attention. Up until that time I had never heard of anybody with prostate cancer or prostate enlargement etc. Remember, I do lead a sheltered life. Much has changed since. I now know a bunch of folks that have had their prostates removed and all of them regret it. I did a lot of digging around c. 1998 and learnt a lot. In the last 18 months, as some of you know, there has been lots of reports about the need for PSA testing and the earlier craze for having your prostate whipped out at the slightest sign of cancer. Way back I had decided and told anybody that would listen that I would NEVER have my prostate taken out even if I was diagnosed with severe prostate cancer. From what I could see the radioactive pellets, which in those days (due to limited test results), were only rated to work for 8 years, seemed a much more palatable solution. Now when I talk to folks that did have their prostates removed they typically concur that in hindsight they would have preferred the radiation approach.

I also found this out and it has been confirmed to me by multiple doctors including two urologist. There is nothing (as yet) that can stop a man from getting prostate cancer. As with all other muscles in our body, and the prostate (like the heart) is a muscle, the only thing that seems to help is exercise. And there is one and only one way to exercise your prostate — and trust me, it sure beats jogging! An “O” a day, my oft stated mantra for life, is the best thing you can do for your prostate — with an “O” day basically translating to a lifetime ‘batting average’ of 1 a day. So if you are a man of 50, you better make sure that you have exercised your prostate at least 18,250 times. If you are 60, like me (in a few months), you have to be at 21,900. With luck you should have been able to wrack up 95% of those numbers just in a decade in your youth! If you haven’t you better get cracking.

Cardura has nothing to do with prostate cancer. Cardura is all about SLOWING DOWN the rate of prostate enlargement — the pressing problem they scream at you on those TV ads. Cardura can be taken as a preventive and now that it is available as a generic it is INEXPENSIVE. From what I can see Cardura is a fraction of the costs of the stuff being plugged on the TV.

Cardura is only available by prescription.

1998 was pivotal year for me health wise. I was working and travelling like a crazy man — that being the height of the dot.com era. All that travel and very long work days did take a toll. I was lucky that I met two great doctors that year. Both were young, one an Indian. They were both BIG into preventive medicine. One, the Indian, a great cardiologist, put me on Lipitor and some high blood pressure medication. The other a urologist put me on Cardura (which also helps with blood pressure). I was too busy those days to even check on this stuff. I just took all these pills every night, without question.

About 7 years later I was getting my prescriptions filled at Walmart in Gilford (NH). They had a really nice pharmacist who I had got to know quite well (because we were frequent customers). As I am paying for the Cardura I happened to say something along the lines of: “I don’t even know why I am taking this …“. His reaction on hearing this was quite amazing. He got visibly ‘agitated’. He went onto tell me that Cardura is one of the few miracle drugs on the market! I didn’t know that. He gave me a long spiel about how effective it was and how research continually validated its effectiveness in slowing down prostate enlargement. What amazed me the most was how passionate he had become about this drug. That was good enough for me. I have never question Cardura again. I take it, I think 4mg, every night.

So, I am just passing this on. It just kills me when I see those TV ads because I worry that they are misleading folks.

Polar Grill Fest, January 26, 2013, In Portsmouth, Supposedly To Aid ‘End Childhood Hunger’ (in the U.S.)

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

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..by Anura Guruge


Click to access the ‘Polar Grill Fest’ Web site with all the information, plus option to buy tickets … albeit with a 25% FEE.


I happened to pick up a flyer for this on New Year’s Day when we went to the ‘Gas Light Grill‘ in Portsmouth for dinner. Looked interesting though we are not beer drinkers. It is said to be an event to raise funds to end childhood hunger in America. That always gets me interested. That we have childhood hunger in the U.S. just confounds me to distraction. This is supposedly the richest country in the world. Just does not seem right. Not sure what the situation is like today, BUT when I was growing up in Ceylon in the 1950s and 1960s we did NOT have childhood hunger. Everybody, irrespective of wealth, income, age, sex, color, religion, got free rations! Yes, there would be an outcry here that that was socialism. Our politicians, justifiably, were very proud of it. Yes, we had free health care and education too. That is another story.

Not sure whether we will go. It is at the Brewery, but kids are allowed. Beer has no appeal to me. I am a wine drinker. It is kind of sad, but I don’t even know how $5 for a beer compares because I cannot remember the last time I ordered a beer. I know I pay, being cheap, between $6 and $9 for a glass of wine. So, I guess $5 for a beer must be ‘OK’.

Pretty irked at the 25.4% fee for online tickets. That is a rip-off.

I bought tickets for the Loudon, NH Speedway Christmas Lights: ‘Gift Of Lights’ online. No service charge. They actually gave you a $2 discount! Printed the tickets, with bar code, at home. That is THE way to do it. So, I am a but miffed about that.

It is 3 weekends away. The Thursday before I have my dreaded inquisition with my cardiologist (though he is very nice). As ever I will get told off for all that is wrong with me, though much of it is genetic since both sides of my family have it. So, I might not be in the mood to go out to eat. IF I get a reprieve, I might think about it. It could be fun. There is supposed to be two bands, neither of whom I have heard of. I will keep you posted.


The parent ‘Share Our Strength’ Web site. Can’t find this event on it! Seems strange. They are advertising a February 6, 2013 event in Portsmouth instead.


My Cardiologist, Dr. Stephen Hanlon, Of Catholic Medical (Manchester, NH) And Ground Flax Seed.

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

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by Anura Guruge




Given my family history, my build and my diet (and I used to be strictly carnivorous until I stopped being a teen), I have, since my late 20s, been considered ‘a heart attack waiting to happen‘. Saw my first cardiologist in 1990 when I was 37. I have a cousin, two years older than me, who had his first (of many) heart attacks at 35. My cholesterol, given that I was relatively ‘young’, was just borderline, around 220 I think. I told the doctor I would get it down in a year. Those days, in my youthful exuberance, no mountain was high enough. Eight years earlier, when my weight when past 200 lbs, I had made some major changes to my life. I had stopped eating meals on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays – just eating one green apple and a small (and I really do mean small) piece of cheese. On those days that I didn’t eat, I also used to run 7 miles — at around 6.5 – 7 minutes a mile. I dropped my weight from 200 to 135 lbs in 6 months. You could count all my ribs. I then allowed my weight to build up to 165. So reducing cholesterol was a challenge in that same league. I eliminated milk and lived on hummus for a year. It kind of became a joke. I would even order hummus when I went out for dinner on business. I dropped my cholesterol to 140.

But, I had to continue seeing a cardiologist. In 1998 I lucked out. I was living in the Lakes Region and was sent to a new Tamil cardiologist from India, Dr. Venkat Nethala, who practiced in Laconia. Those days, and even now, there aren’t too many ‘Indians’ per se in Laconia. Dr. Nethala who was new to the area was delighted to see another brown guy. We became friends and started socializing. I was 45. All my vitals were borderline. Dr. Nethala made a momentus decision. He said he was putting me on Lipitor and two blood pressure medications as a preventive measure. His words were: ‘Anu, you will thank me for this when you are in your late 50s‘. Thank YOU, Dr. Nethala. It was a pain to have to take a handful of pills, plus the aspirin, each night. But, Dr. Nethala was right. I do thank him. So I have been on Lipitor for 14 years — with one short break when I tried another, cheaper statin and didn’t like (psychosomatically or otherwise). Dr. Hanlon, pictured above, told the insurance company that I had to have Lipitor.

Dr. Nethala is now in Maine, close to the Canadian border. I miss him. I have always maintained that Indian or Sri Lanka TRAINED doctors are superior to most — given the fierce competition they have to edure to get into medical school in the first place and then stay there till they qualify. Only the best of the best make it through the system. Indian or Sri Lankan doctors who went to school here don’t have the same ‘touch’ as those that got their M.D. from a school in the sub-continent (and in a few instances Britain). Yes, I had an uncle (mother’s brother) who was a doctor and 4 cousins (all from my mother’s side) who are doctors — all of whom became doctors in Sri Lanka, though one practices in the U.S. and the other in Australia.

When Dr. Nethala abandoned us (he was also our general practitioner) I had to find another cardiologist to get all of my heart medications. Decided to go to Catholic Medical given their reputation. I was allocated Dr. Hanlon.

He is a very NICE doctor. I like him. Two years ago, as part of my intake, I had to do a stress, echo cardiogram and EKG. It came out OK. Given that I still do run, most days, mainly up a steep hill, doctors have told me that I am kind of giving myself my own personal stress test each time I slog up that hill.

I try very hard to avoid seeing doctors and getting tests done. I prefer not to know what is wrong with me. Last August Dr. Hanlon’s staff, who are excellent, started calling me up saying I had to schedule my annual checkup. I pushed back and pushed back until December. In December I went to see him after also getting my blood work done. I was OK — for a change. So there was nothing much we had to discuss. But, given that I was ‘owed’ 20 minutes I enganged him in a conversation as to what else I could do. He told me that he and many of his colleagues at Catholic Medical had started taking GROUND flax seed for heart health.

I had heard of Flax Seed. Deanna had flax seed in the fridge. Deanna took flax seed. But, she didn’t GRIND IT first. So, as soon as I got home I ground some flax seed in a coffee grinder. Since then I have been taking a tablespoon (or two or three) of ground flax seed every day — some in my mandatory, nightly yogurt, the rest dissolved in water with my nightly teaspoon of Metamucil. I like the grittiness of the flax seed. I don’t know if it is doing me any good. It doesn’t seem to be doing me much harm and it is not expensive. So we will wait and see. I just thought I would share with you those words of wisdom from Dr. Hanlon because he strikes me as been very competent.