Shortly after waking up Monday morning, I blacked out, dropped my water glass, and ended on the floor. I woke up pretty quickly, cleaned up the mess, and proceeded to pack a lunch and eat breakfast. I limped from the Metro station to the Patent Office, and did some work.
My ankle hurt, so I called the Health Unit, and asked whether I could come over, and whether they could do anything for me (an Ace bandage, maybe). I took the elevator to the Concourse level, and set out through the underground Concourse to the building with the Health Unit. I didn't make it. I lowered my head to avoid collapsing; someone asked after me if I was OK, and when I admitted that I had a problem, and was trying to get to the Health Unit, he offered to get a Security guy from upstairs to accompany me, and did.
I couldn't remain both vertical and conscious, so I sat down. The Security man didn't carry me, but people arrived from the Health Unit, and someone called the paramedics, who came and took me to Alexandria Hospital. On the way, they started dripping saline solution into me, since my blood pressure was low, and this added to the volume in my veins and arteries.
Once I was at the hospital, I got more saline drip, some hurry-up and wait, and tests; several doctors, nurses, and a social worker also asked me questions. They x-rayed my ankle (sprained, no broken bones), gave me a chest x-ray, did a CT scan of my head, and also an ultrasound of my heart. I should mention that someone wrapped my ankle in a couple of Ace bandages, and put a brace on it. Then they put me in a room and kept me overnight, with the idea of giving me a stress test in the morning.
The nurses and technicians were sweet and helpful people, but I was bored for lack of reading matter, and later had trouble sleeping. My roommate had visitors who chatted, and he watched TV, and later he snored (I can hardly blame him, since he was in the hospital for pneumonia). I was in pain from my foot -- not the ankle, the foot, as a consequence of pressure from the bandaging. Also, I kept hearing beeping equipment and other noises from outside in the corridor.
Another physician, a neurologist, came by in the morning, and he seemed like the wisest of the lot. He diagnosed me as having "micturation syncope" meaning that my blood pressure sometimes goes down when I empty my bladder (except that my collapse at work did not come in the aftermath of micturation). He prescribed a drug to raise my blood pressure when needed.
Someone figured out that I couldn't run on a treadmill with a sprained ankle, so they postponed the stress test and discharged me. (A cardiologist still wants me to get a stress test as an outpatient.) On Tuesday morning I took a cab to the Patent Office, and resumed my work and my life. I have a pair of crutches from the hospital, and I've been using one of them to minimize the stress on my sprained ankle, although I can walk without it.