Thursday, January 31, 2013

I updated my health blog and I am going to post the same thing here as I am too tired right now to do another entry. Please bare with me while everything seems to take so much energy. Will get fixed and be back soon. 
It's been awhile since I have written in this blog. As with many other Phers I have multiple health issues. Right after Christmas I came down with an upper respiratory ailment and began running a lowgrade fever. I had to go see my lung specialist who immediately said what had been viral was now bacterial and put me on the first course of antibiotics, Levaquin. This drug is well known for knocking out pneumonia. My chest x ray did not show any pneumonia however it did show about half a litre of fluid surrounding my lungs. This is almost normal for me at this point. After a week I wasn't feeling a lot better and I went back. I was then given a huge dosage regimen of penicillin for the next week. If I wasn't feeling better by Sunday I was to let the doctor know as she would consider IV antibiotics and a hospitalization. I was feeling somewhat better and felt the chest part had really recovered. I was also using a nebulizer three times a day with a wonderful drug in it called Xopenex. It broke up the congestion. Fast forward a week or so and now I have developed the following: I am ALWAYS cold (one exception, in my bed with warm pjs on and under a down comforter designed for the chilly nights of New England. Other than that forget it! I am also seemingly compelled to eat ice. When talking with my mother, she reminds me that when my grandmother had those two symptoms she was always anemic. I went to the cardiologist today and he had the results of my bloodwork done on Monday. I can't believe it: my mother is right! I not only am anemic but he can tell I have been for some time. I have not been exercising because I simply have no energy right now to do so. I often feel light headed. I can sleep 8 hours and get up feeling very tired. He will be sending all that information over to my PCP, he thinks I might need a hematologist and shots. I hate needles but I hate this feeling even more. MY PH seems to be doing okay. I am not overly short on breath. My pulse oxymeter shows that I am rarely low now. I think the revatio is working well. One odd thing about the revatio. The other night I began to have really bad pains in my feet. My pain toleranced is quite high. I have had two open heart surgeries. (That means not only cutting through the sternum but the muscles, having ribs spread etc.) I am no stranger to pain and I want to tell you the pain was pretty bad. It felt like a sledge hammer had hit my feet several times each. I could barely stand to walk on them. I called the specialty pharmacy where I get my meds from and sure enough it is a KNOWN side effect. It lasted for a few days then went away. I asked a few PHriends and they had leg pain and/or foot pain. This is the value of knowing others who have what you have. Life goes on and I am doing okay except for the anemia. I have to get this treated and corrected. Everything is difficult when you are exhausted, my thinking is not clear and I am grumpy. Yes, I admit it, grumpy. Just ask the dog and cat. When they are whining and carrying on at 6:30 a.m. and my head is pounding it's not pretty. Hopefully my PCP (who is wonderful) will find me another doctor to help me. My cardiologist is also wonderful and such a great listener. He takes the time to listen to my complaints, answers any and all questions and is just helpful. I wish I had switched to him years earlier. Stay warm and carry on.

Monday, January 07, 2013

A New Year

It's been awhile since I have written an entry and there are many reasons for that....
Christmas had me overwhelmed with the blues this year right up until a few weeks before. At that time my spirits slowly began to lift (to which I credit the loving acts/visits of several people.) I made the decision about two weeks before to put up the tree, although I was not feeling enthusiastic. My son had the flu and was down and out for about ten days. He was not able to be around me and I had to be content to drop a few bags of things off at the door of his apartment. My breathing was problematic and shopping was difficult. I made an early decision that I would not be prepping or hosting a large meal or gathering. I received a turkey already so I decided just to cook it with minimal sides. I did bake about six batches of cookies. A few days before Christmas my doorbell rang and my thoughtful cousin sent me a lovely greenery centerpiece for the table, complete with candles. That brightened things up. Although we had the tree up we didn't do much more in the way of decorating. Fast forward to Christmas Eve. That afternoon I was feeling down and my sister and her daughters showed up at our door at 11 a.m. That was one of the best visits I have ever had with them. We had a good time and I talked about a lot of things going on that had been troubling me and now my adult nieces were giving me advice (good advice at that) and being very supportive. They encouraged me to get ready and go to my brother's that evening for his celebration and gift exchange. I did and had a wonderful time. The following morning Rob and I got up and opened our gifts. My son who was much better came over and opened his. We had a nice breakfast of Belgian waffles. I made the turkey dinner (with few sides and it was so much easier than my usual) and around four thirty my mother, sister and her "friend' came over and we had a nice visit and dessert. It was a very nice Christmas.

I saw my sister's girls and son-in-law the following day for several hours as well. Haven't spent that much time with them in a long time and it was wonderful.

A few days later I got sick. I figured I had the now wide spread flu in the area. When I began running a fever and my chest began to hurt I called my lung doctor's group. They called in an antibiotic and had me go for a chest x ray. The following week I wasn't better and I went in to see my lung doctor who said I had a bacterial infection on top of the flu. She prescribed medicines I put into my nebulizer, some stronger antibiotics and a few over the counter items. I am doing a bit better now but this flu has wiped me out.

Hopefully things will be back to normal soon. Just hoping Rob doesn't get it.
Happy New Year!!!!!